David Asha wants to tell you a story about three people: Elliott Asha, his son, broken by a loss that will redeem him.
Ben Elmys, a surrogate father and David’s trusted friend, a man who might also be a murderer. Harriet Kealty, a retired detective searching for answers to three mysterious deaths, while also investigating a man who might turn out to be the love of her life.
Every word David tells you is true, but you will think it fiction . . .
Adam Hamdy’s thriller The Other Side of Night is a genre-defying novel about how far a person might be willing to go to spend more time with the ones they’ve lost. Exploring love, loss, family and expectation, The Other Side of the Night tests the limits of the space-time continuum to present a reality far from our own.
Incorporating a range of mediums such as articles, columns, court reports, interview transcripts and letters, alongside standard prose and dialogue, Adam offers a complex yet rewarding tale of family, relationships, grief and time.
“Harri hadn’t been able to concentrate after finding the message. She hadn’t been able to sleep much either. The words could have been a cruel prank, but something about them touched her finely honed instincts as a detective.”
The Other Side of the Night is largely centred around dishonoured police detective Harriet Kealty, who conducts her own private investigation into the deaths of physicists Elizabeth and David Asha, and the man who adopts their orphaned 10-year-old son.
Harriet suspects Ben Elmys, who Harriet once dated briefly, could be responsible for the deaths of Elizabeth and David, and over the course of the novel she stumbles upon unexplainable events that indicate some kind of other-worldy, science fiction element to the story.
Adam’s writing is accessible and highly readable – despite quite an intricate plot and quite a complex ending, at its heart, this book is a character exploration. We’re invested in the Asha family and their young son, and we’re also rooting for Harriet as she attempts to salvage her career and prove that there’s more to the Asha deaths than previously known.
“She would never forget how she’d felt that day and even the memory of what had followed couldn’t entirely tarnish the joy of their first encounter. She hoped she’d feel that way again, but right now there was no sign of romance on the horizon, and she wasn’t sure she wanted it after running into Ben.”
The Other Side of the Night is described as a thriller, but it’s also science fiction and perhaps dystopian fiction, alongside a police procedural, poetry, court report and high-tension, suspense mystery.
With quite a small cast of characters, the novel feels deliberately claustrophobic. We’re swept up into a rather emotional story that bounces between the same core characters, amidst quite a limited setting as well, allowing the reader to maintain focus on the story and its movements.
“After he was gone, Harri stood in the little flat for a moment, listening to the distant sounds of the city, where thousands of lives far more productive than hers were being played out.”
A unique and impressive mind-bending science fiction read, Adam Hamdy’s The Other Side of Night is for readers of thriller and genre-bending novels. Readership skews 25+
Thank you to the publishing company for mailing me a review copy in exchange for an honest review.
The Other Side of Night
Pan Macmillan Publishers