Something from the Nightside is the first book in the Nightside series by Simon R. Green, an author who has written several stand-alone novels but mainly writes sci-fi/fantasy series. This story is set in the Nightside, a secret world hidden in the heart of London, where it’s always 3am and gods and monsters drink alongside mortals.
John Taylor, detective and child of the Nightside, has been living in London proper after fleeing the Nightside several years ago with a bullet in his back, courtesy of a friend. The search for a client’s runaway daughter has lured him back. It should have been a simple job - get in, find the girl, get out and get paid - but something in the Nightside has other plans.
I liked John Taylor, who is typical of Green’s main characters; they are underdogs, more cynical and stubborn than heroic. Taylor prides himself on never letting down a client down and relies on brains and dirty tricks to take on enemies far more powerful than himself. I also liked Taylor’s relationship with Walker, his nemesis, sometimes father figure and the closest thing to the law in the Nightside.
While it is better to read the books in order, Green gives you enough back-story so you don’t have to. The series is well written; fast paced and has a supporting cast of interesting characters. While each book is a self-contained story, a larger story line links the books to each other and the big question of the series is "who or what is Taylor's mother?" She disappeared shortly after John’s birth and his father drank himself to death after finding out.
Check out the Nightside series if you like a detective story mixed with urban fantasy.
Title: Something from the Nightside
Author: Simon R. Green
Recommended by Murray L, Devonport Library.
Murray L works at Devonport Library and enjoys reading mysteries, sci-fi, fantasy, horror and the occasional biography.