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Jonathan Dark or The Evidence Of Ghosts

3.65  ·  Rating details ·  233 ratings  ·  61 reviews
Maria King knows a secret London. Born blind, she knows the city by sound and touch and smell. But surgery has restored her sight - only for her to find she doesn't want it. Jonathan Dark sees the shadowy side of the city. A DI with the Metropolitan Police, he is haunted by his failure to save a woman from the hands of a stalker. Now it seems the killer has set his sights ...more
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published February 25th 2016 by Orion
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Average rating 3.65  · 
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Nov 11, 2015 rated it liked it
I absolutely loved the first novel by A.K. Benedict, “The Beauty of Murder,” and so I was delighted to read this second book. They do say that second novels are difficult things to get right and I did find this a little over complicated in terms of plot and with a mix of mystery and fantasy, which did not always blend together well.

When Maria King finds she is being stalked, D.I. Jonathan Dark is sent to investigate. He believes the stalker is the same man who killed another woman recently and i
Sharon Bolton
Mar 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Maria has a stalker. Maria’s stalker killed his last victim, meaning Maria is in danger. DI Jonathan Dark and his team are trying to find him before he can kill again.

Maria is blind. Well, actually she isn’t. Blind since birth, she recently had a sight restoring operation, but can’t cope with what she sees being so different to what she previously imagined. So Maria wears a blindfold, feeling and hearing and smelling her way around London. Maria is also a mud-lark. Every day at low tide, she co
Nov 11, 2015 rated it did not like it
Shelves: netgalley
I really wanted to like this book. The blurb is excellent and if the story had actually followed this premise, it may have worked out. And yes, it starts well. It's different and you hope this author is offering something new.

However, it's just so disjointed that it's practically unreadable. You know that feeling when you walk into a room and pause...because you've completely forgotten why you went in there? That's what every scene in the book feels like. What is this doing here? How is this rel
Liz Barnsley
I’m a little in love with this book. It is something different, and not so much about the surface of it but oh so much about the many layers underneath, thought provoking, haunting (sometimes literally) and full of descriptive authenticity that shines from every page.

Jonathan Dark is a police detective with a difference who is determined to save Maria from a stalker who has killed before. Maria has regained her sight but finds she does not wish to use it – meanwhile another London is hidden just
Tracy Fenton
May 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I downloaded this book after meeting AK Benedict at Harrogate Crime Festival last year and it’s sat patiently on my kindle waiting for me to read it. Having read several psychological thrillers in a row I decided it was time to read something different. What I didn’t expect was just how “different” Jonathan Dark would be.

I think I would be quite safe in saying this book covers most genres; crime, police procedural, supernatural, fantasy and paranormal. This is definitely NOT a standard crime boo
Feb 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
Jonathan Dark or The Evidence of Ghosts is a delightfully surprising, supernatural read. It is a little bit different, combining a murder mystery with a ghostly element.

The story takes us to present day London and we meet Jonathan Dark. Dark is a police officer in the Met, with a dreadfully sad personal life and a few secrets. He is hunting a stalker, who has developed an obsession with a young blind woman Maria. Maria is complex and hard to make sense of at times. She was blind and thanks to an
Nov 15, 2015 rated it did not like it
This book starts promisingly. Maria King is blind, but has a stalker who has killed before. DI Dark takes up the case, determined that Maria will not suffer the same fate as the previous victim. So far, so good.

However there is a LOT going on in this book. Maria is blind, but has recently had an operation to enable her to see; yet she still wears a blindfold. A confusing detail which I don't think added anything to the story. There's also a side-story about cross-dressing, which was equally conf
Allie Riley
Oct 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wow. I absolutely loved this multi-layered and adroitly plotted book. Great characters and it kept me guessing almost to the end. Creepier by far than the ghosts was the stalker. The passages where his thoughts were voiced were downright disturbing. I am hoping that this is part of a series because I would love to see more of Jonathan Dark.
Mar 31, 2015 rated it liked it
This is a tough book to review. Let's start with the positives. It has a strong premise; that ghosts wander freely throughout London alongside everyone else with some people able to see and even interact with them. I have always enjoyed the "other" London theme. I'm thinking of the Peter Grant series and Shadow Police. And this book is similar in that it follows a member of the Met, DI Dark, as he investigate a stalker who has killed before. The characters are strong and the premise good so now ...more
Two Envelopes and a Phone
Not perfect, but a pleasure. Maybe a bit matter-of-fact or quick, at times, in dealing with its supernatural elements - but this does give a Fantasy novel a certain charm - “you aren’t shocked all this weird stuff is normal to some, are you?”.

It’s not just Fantasy - it’s Dark Fantasy, I guess Urban Fantasy, call it Horror - ghosts, and a stalker with a serial-killer side hustle - call it Horror/Mystery hybridization. The horrid culprit lurking in this novel is a weak spot in the book, but it’s f
Apr 10, 2017 marked it as dnf

Sadly I had to DNF this one. I wish I could have struggled through but I have so much to read and I just couldn't get through this.

The truth is this is not a bad book. I didn't hate it I just couldn't get into it. The plot was just too confused. I like it when authors mix genres and attempt something new so I give A.K. Benedict great respect for that. But the murder mystery/paranormal ghost story mix just didn't work for me. It was muddled, jumpy and lacked flow.

Also, I wasn't a fan of the char
Edward Cox
Jan 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Maria is blind. She sees London in a different way to most. For her, the city is a collage of sounds and scents and feelings. Jonathan Dark is a policeman. For him, London is a dangerous and shadowy place, far stranger than most would believe. Maria has a stalker. The stalker says he loves her, but the last time he told someone that the object of his affection wound up as the star of an unsolved murder case. Jonathan's unsolved murder case.

Maria has seven days reciprocate the stalker's feelings
Nov 17, 2015 rated it did not like it
I kept hoping this book would get better, there were some glimmers along the way that it might, hence me actually finishing it, but it left me feeling I'd wasted time reading it.
It seemed to be a mash of two books, police case, and ghost stories, which didn't link together particularly well...and whilst I was figuring that out, in came cross dressing references, for no valid reason to the plot.
Could have been so much better.
David Harris
Feb 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I'm grateful to the publisher for an advance e-copy of this book via NetGalley.

Even if the book hadn't totally won me over within a few pages, i'd love it for the final words: "he can't get away. Death has no sequel." I hope that unlike Death, this DOES have a sequel, because Jonathan Dark is an intriguing and complex character and I'd like to learn more about him - and about some of the others.

Blending a skilfully realised detective plot with a background of ghosts and hauntings, Benedict gives
Leonie Hinch
Dec 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
Jonathan Dark or the Evidence of Ghosts is exactly what it says on the tin. Two different sorts of stories running concurrently and eventually meeting at the end. 
Jonathan Dark is a detective with London's met investigating a stalker who has already killed and is now hunting a new victim. Maria the Stalkee is a mud lark (someone who hunts for artefacts in the mud around the Thames river). Maria is more at risk than the last Stalkee though as she is blind. Or rather she was blind, had an operatio
Jan 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
Brilliantly creepy and wonderfully written story about detective inspector Jonathan Dark and his coming to terms with both the existence of ghosts and his own nature as he tries to protect blind mudlark Maria from a stalker.
Jan 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
'London is ghost-locked,' Frank says. 'Every corner, alleyway, highway, high-rise, gym, café, canal, library or house is haunted in some way. Every window has a ghost looking out. Part of you sees, and it is this part which is screaming at all times inside... Cities are difficult when you're in denial of ghosts. It is an unconscious stress to the body and mind. London is at once an old city heaving with history's spirits and a powerful, steely centre that attracts the young and driven. Its inhab
Jul 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Crime with a difference: there is a supernatural element, so this is part detective story and part fantasy/horror. Set in London in and around the river at Spitalfields, with a mudlark blogger as the victim of a stalker who has already killed once and who seems invincible through his use of surveillance equipment. The story is told in the present tense throughout. The idea that there is no death as such raises all sorts of interesting opportunities, both for comic effect and, once Jonathan, the ...more
Sep 19, 2017 rated it liked it
I'm generally sceptical about books in which the supernatural is combined with the police procedural. I generally like my crime fiction to be gritty and firmly placed on solid ground so it was a surprise to pick up a book that was obviously dominated by ghosts and hauntings and thoroughly enjoy the escapist element of the read.
The plot revolves around a serial killer who is stalking a blind woman who has just had an operation to restore her sight. There is a separate plot of a sinister crime gro
Emma Carter-Biggs
This book could have been so much more. It could have been a crime thriller, a ghost story. A love story.. A story of self discovery.
Instead it was none of those things. It had so many sub plots that added nothing to the story...
Why were there ghosts? What did they bring to the tale?
Why was there a mention of cross dressing?
Who was the baddie and why?
None of these queations were answered.
I am loath to not finish a book once I have started it.. But don't bother.
Bee Wyeth
Very interesting London crime thriller with a great supernatural element running through it. I really enjoyed it and I think the author has much improved on her first book. The two story strands don't quite mesh perfectly and I cared much more about one than the other but the characters were well drawn enough for me to want to read more of them. I hope there is a sequel or two in the future. ...more
Claire Huston
May 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars
This was an entertainingly different spin on the classic police-procedural/serial killer countdown story. Jonathan Dark is a great central character with all the classic problems of a downbeat detective and then some. The last few chapters in particular have great suspense and pace. Worth checking out if you're a fan of the genre and don't find the fantasy/supernatural elements.
Rebecca Haslam
Dec 12, 2018 rated it liked it
I haven't read many books that centre around a blind character and that alone was enough to intrigue me to read it. The story itself flowed rather well and although there were and are parts that could have easily been shortened, I enjoyed this book quite a bit, even if it did take me a few days to finish due to work. ...more
Jul 28, 2019 rated it liked it
Love how the crime was portrayed but I didn't like how quick the murderer was captured and his after story.
Love the uniqueness of the victim being a once blind women but has gotten surgery to get her eyesight back and still wears a blind fold.
The mix of the fictional ghost world completely muddled with whats going on.
Not really the type of book I would usually read.
Nov 13, 2017 rated it liked it
Interesting and fun. If you like Bryant and May or The Rivers of London series then you will enjoy this one.

Thanks to my school librarian for both the recommendation and of course the book, gotta love your library!!!
Jun 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017
I loved this. Need to gather my thoughts before I write even a short review.
Disappointing. Too many unnecessary elements yet sometimes, there were too few links to each part of the story. Such that I felt like I must have missed reading parts of it sometimes.
D Cox
Dec 31, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved it! Another very unique and gripping mystery.
Yvonne Stevens
Feb 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
A book that will delight lovers of London. It is strange and by no means a straightforward crime novel. However descriptions of London and of the main characters really bring them to life.
Damian Knight
Jun 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
a good crime thriller
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A.K. Benedict read English at Cambridge and Creative Writing at the University of Sussex. She lives in Hastings and writes in a room filled with teapots and the severed head of a ventriloquist’s dummy. She did have a blow-up pirate but punctured it.

Alexandra was the front-person of an underground indie band, has composed music for film and television and is currently writing her second novel. Her

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