Reviews | Written by Alister Davison 07/12/2021


It’s late 1930s Hollywood and when Joh Devlin, an insubordinate investigator for the DA’s office, asks author Raymond Chandler and actor Boris Karloff to help him with a case, the pair are more than happy to oblige. What follows is a hard-boiled delve into the darker recesses of the movie industry, with murder and conspiracy aplenty, a fictional cocktail laced with noir and spiced with old-fashioned pulp.

Newman’s tale is a homage and more, a showcase for his trademark wit and unassailable knowledge of the movies. Chandler and Karloff are delightful, a duo who have more in common than the reader first realises, and they learn about and from each other as the story progresses. Newman also weaves facts within this tale – showing that the truth can often be more outlandish than faction – although it’s hard to tell one from the other until his afterword. Involving an actor most famous for a particular role, it’s also a discourse on monsters and our fascination with them; the creatures found within these pages are at once beguiling and terrifying, yet often all too human.

Something More Than Night is huge fun from start to finish; Newman transports the reader back in time to offer an investigation unlike any other, a finely-crafted tribute to the characters and plots of early detective fiction and mystery novels, possessing an atmosphere that is utterly unique. As a standalone story, it works brilliantly, but we’d love to see more from this duo in the future.