Today I am interviewing Tarn Richardson, author of the new horror / historical fiction novel, The Risen, final book of The Darkest Hand trilogy.
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DJ: Hey Tarn! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview! Horror? Historical Fiction? How exactly would you describe The Darkest Hand trilogy?
TR: Hey DJ! Yes, there’s quite a mix of genres within the books! They’re hard to define. The trilogy could be called horror, but it’s quite ‘measured’ horror I suppose. The nasty bits are there for a reason, not simply to be gratuitous for the sake of it. There’s a lot of historical backdrop (of World War One), the wars and its events heavily researched by me before writing, details of the actual battles and specific theatres of the war. There’s a thriller aspect to the books, particularly books two and three. And a paranormal crime slant, as well. I tend to describe it as ‘Dark Fiction’. That covers all bases!
DJ: For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?
TR: I live in England, near Salisbury, not far from Stonehenge! I’ve worked as a copywriter and have written Murder Meal Party Games. In 2012, I travelled to France and Belgium on the trail of a Great Uncle who went out to fight in WW1 and never came back. Whilst there, the idea for The Darkest Hand trilogy planted its seed and then grew within me. In 2015 the first of the books of the trilogy, THE DAMNED, was published by Duckworth Overlook and by Overlook Press in 2016, THE FALLEN following a year later.
DJ: What is The Risen and The Darkest Hand trilogy about?
TR: The Darkest Hand trilogy is an epic story set in the backdrop of the First World War. The Catholic Inquisition, still strong but now working in the shadows, sends its most powerful, but flawed, inquisitor, Poldek Tacit, to investigate the murder of a Cardinal within the city of Arras at the start of the war. Teaming up with the beautiful Sister Isabella to solve the crime together they uncover a dark conspiracy that leads to very heart of the Vatican and beyond.
THE RISEN, the final part of the trilogy, sees our heroes face Russian revolution and the rise of the Antichrist in the closing phase of the war, searching for a way in which he can be defeated before he assumes ultimate power within the world and casts it into endless dark.
It’s a vast and complex piece of work, but one which hopefully speeds through at a rate of knots and leaves with the reader at the end with that lingering sense of wonder that sometimes remains after reading a book set deep within true and startling events. Continue reading