The Old Religion: Dark and Chillingly Atmospheric. (Hardback)
  • The Old Religion: Dark and Chillingly Atmospheric. (Hardback)
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The Old Religion: Dark and Chillingly Atmospheric. (Hardback)

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£12.99
Hardback 400 Pages / Published: 14/06/2018
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WELCOME TO THE DARK HEART OF CORNWALL . . . 'One of the very best crime writers we have' Mark Billingham 'A chilling tale' Lee Child 'Great stuff' Mick Herron 'Full of menace and secrets' Tom Wood 'Martyn Waites is already crime fiction royalty . . . I bloody loved this book' Steve Cavanagh He was running from his past. She was running from her future. Sometimes helping a stranger is the last thing you should do . . . The Cornish village of St Petroc is the sort of place where people come to hide. Tom Killgannon is one such person. An ex-undercover cop, Tom is in the Witness Protection Programme hiding from some very violent people and St Petroc's offers him a chance to live a safe and quiet life. Until he meets Lila. Lila is a seventeen-year-old runaway. When she breaks into Tom's house she takes more than just his money. His wallet holds everything about his new identity. He also knows that Lila is in danger from the travellers' commune she's been living at. Something sinister has been going on there and Lila knows more than she realises. But to find her he risks not only giving away his location to the gangs he's in hiding from, but also becoming a target for whoever is hunting Lila.

Publisher: Zaffre Publishing
ISBN: 9781785764318
Number of pages: 400
Weight: 594 g
Dimensions: 240 x 162 x 35 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
Waites brings all his storytelling talent and experience to this chilling tale, with results so spectacular I might never go to Cornwall again. Superb * Lee Child *
A strong plot, a formidable air of menace . . . a superbly executed cautionary tale about the malevolent force of parochialism * Laura Wilson, Guardian *
Waites is one of the very best crime writers we have, simple as that. I've been looking forward to this book for a long time and, boy, it was worth waiting for. I don't know if I devoured IT or IT devoured ME... * Mark Billingham *
Martyn has written another raw, deftly-plotted thriller with a dark heart and a real emotional punch * Simon Kernick *
Authentically spooky, thrillingly atmospheric and unnervingly relevant. It reads like The Wicker man for the Brexit era * Chris Brookmyre *
One of the brightest stars in the British crime writing firmament * John Connolly *
Reading Martyn Waites is a guaranteed thrill-ride. His characters sing off the page, his plots keep you guessing until the end, and I always read his books in a day. So grab The Old Religion and make Martyn Waites your new religion! * Sarah Pinborough *
A joyous new series with an adorable hero. Waites has come thundering back with all his talent intact * Alex Marwood *
One of those books you start reading and feel it envelope you like a second skin, meaning you can't put it down. Deliciously creepy, with a startling evocation of that scary old village with hidden secrets vibe. I loved it. Every word. Superbly written, creepy as hell, and chilling to the bone. I can't recommend it highly enough! * Luca Veste *
Martyn Waites is already crime fiction royalty. With The Old Religion he has delved into the fears and hearts of disillusioned Britain. Tom Kilgannon is one of the best new characters in modern fiction. I bloody loved this book * Steve Cavanagh *
A chilling slice of country noir. Great stuff * Mick Herron *
A superbly atmospheric book full of menace and secrets * Tom Wood *
The Old Religion is Martyn Waites at his dark and chilling best, a landmark work of rural noir which tears apart the countryside idyll and exposes just how twisted its bones really are * Eva Dolan *
The master of sinister. Prepare to be creeped out * Angela Clarke *
An unputdownable read, twisting and turning into the heart of darkness * Rebecca Chance *
A compulsive and creepy crime novel, The Old Religion is brilliantly atmospheric and original. It's one of those books you keep saying to yourself - just one more chapter - and then realise you've been up all night. One of the best books I've read this year * Stav Sherez *
Deeply unsettling and hauntingly realistic, The Old Religion takes all the things I love in a book and smashes them together - hard * Susi Holliday *
The Old Religion is crime noir at its finest. Gritty, claustrophobically tense and deeply emotive - unputdownable! * Steph Broadribb, author of Deep Down Dead *
This is a great read - dark and disturbing, like The Wicker Man reinvented for our own troubled times. This is the side of Cornwall you'd rather not see - full of sinister undercurrents - but the result is a novel that's gripping from the first page to its incredibly satisfying climax * Kevin Wignall, author of A Death in Sweden *
An excellently woven crime novel, with a captivating setting and a brilliant lead character, from master storyteller Martyn Waites * Ragnar Jonasson *
I LOVED The Old Religion. I adored the tense, taut prose punctuated with lyricism; the dark and twisting plot; the dance between the main characters * A.K. Benedict, author of The Evidence of Ghosts *
A twisting, atmospheric, scary tale that delves into Cornwall's dark side - ancient and modern - to introduce a terrific new character in troubled cop-in-hiding Tom Killgannon. You won't be finding this one on the Cornish Tourist Board's reading list . . . * Anya Lipska *
Darkly mesmerising * Chris Ewan *
A chilling slice of contemporary folk horror that will make you think twice before venturing into that friendly looking Cornish pub * The Guardian, Mark Billingham mentions the book in his `the books that made me' interview *
It's a dark story and not for the faint hearted: this is Cornwall post-Brexit when the locals have realised that they've been lied to and tourists from the prosperous south east are avoiding the county, nervous of the Brexiteers they might encounter. Martyn Waites does an excellent job of drawing real people, people with plights you can understand. Killgannon is excellent, but I was particularly impressed by Lila, who begins as someone you'd probably go out of your way to avoid, but who gets under your skin and you end up wanting something to go right for her. The plot's a good one with excellent pacing and a feeling of menace which you can never quite shake. There's a neat twist at the end too, which I really didn't spot * The Bookbag *
'"The Old Religion" is based on the sinister and secretive paganism rituals of the Cornish old days within the small community of St Petroc and its inhabitants and the conclusion to this dark and chilling story literally blew me away * Miriam Smith *
A strong plot, a formidable air of menace... a superbly executed cautionary tale * The Guardian *
The Old Religion is a great mix of modern and pagan beliefs, the contrasts are used to good effect. Grounded and realistic [and] has a cracking denouement * Nudge Book *
A riveting chiller * Sunday Express *
The Wicker Man and other folk horror classics run through The Old Religion...Waites handles this material expertly, creating fully rounded characters, a setting that is dripping in creepy gothic atmosphere, and a plot that keeps the reader guessing until the terrific climax * Big Issue *
With a brilliant cast of characters, some very fast paced action and a tense, well-crafted plot, this thriller grabs you by the scruff of the neck and keeps you captivated. Fabulous stuff * Sunday People *
Waites' taste for English Gothic is in the mix here, as are some masterful plot revelations * Financial Times *
clever, disturbing and very real * Woman's Way *
Dark, chillingly atmospheric and thought-provoking, The Old Religion explores the insidious power of mob mentality, but also the desperation of those who have nothing. But this is also a page-turning thriller, with an extraordinary cast of characters, and a plot that races along. Highly recommended * Back to the Books Blog *
This riveting chiller is most memorable as a portrayal of a downtrodden dying community beset by sinister, spooky events * Sunday Express *
This is unputdownable. Dark, fast, hide behind the sofa or chew your nails. Your choice * Frost Magazine *
Is it a crime yarn? Is it a horror story? The short answer is 'yes to both' and it's an engrossing and chilling read * Weekend Sport *
The not so pretty north Cornwall he creates is a rich seam to mine * Promoting Crime *
A highly entertaining and engaging thriller... [I] particularly enjoyed the evocatively atmospheric descriptions of a Cornwall which was so far removed from the usual picture-postcard descriptions * Nudge Books *
Martyn Waites' excellent new thriller still managed to keep us on edge even while it was scattering all the folk horror tropes around like nine-pins. If you're a frustrated crime/horror author scrabbling for the next great idea, you're going to love this and hate this in equal measure - love it because it's brilliantly written with a plot that flows like daemonic clockwork, hate it because it's such a brilliant twist to an old idea you'll be jealous you didn't think of it first * Starburst Magazine *
Chilling and atmospheric * Western Morning News *
[A] gripping page-turner in the dark heart of Cornwall * Choice Magazine *
Waites deftly plaits the traditional elements of the detective story with chilling spells and summonings of the old religion. An astute Brexit analogy lends the villagers' collective delusion gruesome topicality in this well-told, immensely satisfying tale of contemporary folk horror * Irish Times *
Echoes of THE WICKER MAN, with hints of rural pagan mysticism and muted violence just waiting to explode in the light of day and this compelling volume could well be the first in a major series, with a central character painted in all shades of grey and anything but cardboard-thin * Crime Time, review *
Yes, we are definitely in Wicker Man territory here but leave your 'I've already seen this/read that' cynicism at the door because Martyn Waites' excellent new thriller still managed to keep us on edge even while it was scattering all the folk horror tropes around like nine-pins. If you're a frustrated crime/horror author scrabbling for the next great idea, you're going to love this and hate this in equal measure - love it because it's brilliantly written with a plot that flows like daemonic clockwork; hate it because it's such a brilliant twist to an old idea you'll be jealous you didn't think of it first. Tom Kilgannon is a terrific protagonist with enough backstory for a whole coven of twisted follow-ups (assuming he survives this initial adventure, of course) and the way Waites combines the anger and unrest of Brexit Britain with the dark ritualism of ancient pagan belief is pretty much genius. Yes, we know it's been tried before but it's rarely, if ever, been done this well * Starburst Magazine *

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Reviews

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“Loved it!”

I have definitely been introduced to a new author in Martyn Waites and this excellent book "The Old Religion" will certainly not be my last by him. Having discovered that he is also the writer Tania Carver... More

Hardback edition
5th May 2018
Helpful? Upvote 2

“Tin Mines”

My first thoughts on starting to read this book that it was all a bit The Wicker Man, I was pleased to read that this was vindicated by the author in his blurb as being the type of feel he was going for.

It is quite... More

Hardback edition
12th June 2018
Helpful? Upvote 1

“Fantastic ”

This is undoubtably one of my favourite reads of 2018 so far, if not already my favourite for fiction. I read this book from cover to cover the day that it arrived. I could not put it down, gripped right from the... More

Hardback edition
30th May 2018
Helpful? Upvote 1

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