It’s time for some traditional detective work, as Time Bomb comics bring us the eagerly awaited follow up to part one of The Book Of Solomon, featuring everybody’s new favourite top copper, DCI Harker. Thankfully, it’s not been a long wait between the two, and I could go at this without a re-read, though I did look at the summation of book one that starts off book two.
The story concerns a murder, a book (guess which one) and a satanic cult who like nothing better than an orgy followed by a nice cup of tea. Harker and his ever present DS Critchley continue their investigation and, as things get more complicated, consider the idea that they might actually be much more simple than they appear.
The best thing about this collection for me is the dialogue. Okay, the plot is pretty tight, and Vincent Danks doesn’t put a foot wrong with his excellent characterization and depictions of modern day London, but without the script it’s all just pretty pictures (nicely coloured by Andrew Richmond). Harker is an older man, a grumpy chain smoker who is a cross between Morse and Gene Hunt, with the smarts and wit of both, coupled with the world weariness of a man who’s seen too much. “I don’t like being made to look a chump,” he says to Critchley and DI Griffin. “That’s why I work with you two.” The script doesn’t rush things, taking time to pad out the lives of the detectives a little, and succeeds in the trick of making you think you know them by the end.
Harker: The Book Of Solomon doesn’t reinvent detective fiction, but it does do it very well indeed, and the book itself is a nice square bound edition with thick pages. It goes without saying that if you’re intrigued by this review you should get part one as well as part two, available from Time Bomb comics at https://timebombcomics.com/shop