BOOKS

For the Hell of It

Phil Rickman

RRP: £18.99

2 April 2020

Published by Corvus

ISBN: 9781786494597

RRP: £7.99

30 October 2019

Published by Corvus

ISBN: 9781786494603

THE SIXTEENTH INSTALMENT IN THE MERRILY WATKINS SERIES

‘Merrily Watkins is the most singular of crime fiction protagonists… As ever [Rickman]’s supremely skillful at teasing out the menace that lies behind English folk customs and legends and weaving them into a compelling contemporary narrative.’ Mail on Sunday

‘I called on darkness… midnight darkness…’

At the end of the 18th century, the poet William Wordsworth rambled, in a strange visionary haze, from Salisbury Plain up into the Wye Valley. The epic walk changed his life.

More than 200 years later, Oxford student David Vaynor followed the same secluded route and still can’t explain what happened to him there. Now he’s back, as a police detective investigating a suspicious death, and finds that, in this place of cliffs and chasms, it’s far from easy to escape the past.

Meanwhile, Merrily Watkins, diocesan exorcist for Hereford, is being warned that in-depth investigation
is not part of her job – a job she may not be holding down for very long. She’ll be risking her future to help Vaynor uncover the secrets carried through a haunted landscape by Britain’s most revered river.

For behind the scenic beauty are elements that, as Wordsworth wrote, ‘promote ill purposes and flatter foul desires.’