A terrifying psychological thriller which plays on your deepest, darkest, most primeval fears
It's the news every parent dreads: Ed Lister's world changes forever the day he hears his art-student daughter has been brutally murdered in Florence.
A year later, frustrated with the police inquiry, Ed vows to find Sophie's killer. His quest leads to a mysterious website - and its owner, Ward, a charming, brilliant psychopath.
But as the search for Ward follows a trail of bodies across Europe to America, some of Ed's own secrets begin to emerge. And the question arises: is Ed the hunter, or the hunted
Maclean is a formidable writer, who takes simple ideas and turns them into compelling thrillers. In the recent Home Before Dark, Maclean takes on a subject I'm surprised hasn't been dealt with more: the internet chat room, which was one of the earliest attractions of online life and that has proven to be among the most dangerous. I'm a sucker for the twisting plot, and that's one of Maclean's specialities. - Jeffery Deaver, writing in Guardian
Utterly gripping - the best thriller of the Internet age I have ever read. It lures you into the seductive world of the chat-room, where nothing is quite what it seems, and the mundane shades chillingly into the sinister. There were times when I scarcely dared to turn the page. - Magnus Linklater
A classic thriller of the highest quality - complex, meticulously researched and skilfully told - but it goes further, taking the genre into cyber-space and giving terror a whole new dimension. The murderous hacker enters unobserved into his victims' lives. Reality and virtual reality become confused. The protagonists criss-cross the globe by train and plane but the digital avenger is always one step ahead. A compulsive read. - Piers Paul Read
Tautly crafted and chilling, if there's a rush of people cancelling internet chatroom accounts this month blame the dark talent of Charles Maclean - Daily Record
I was SO impressed by Charles Maclean's HOME BEFORE DARK - what a gripping, disturbing, utterly up to the minute thriller - such an achievement - Joanna Trollope
Packed with blood, murder and mayhem, HOME BEFORE DARK is a particularly disturbing thriller - menacing...gruesome...original. Gird yourself and don't underestimate Maclean. - Spectator
A thriller that gripped me by the throat and wouldn't let go for 36 tortured hours, HOME BEFORE DARK chills the eyes as well as the spine. I have never seen such evil leak out of a computer screen. Maclean is a master of electronic horror. - Ferdinand Mount
Like the best horror stories, HOME BEFORE DARK creates a stifling, claustrophobic atmosphere; it catches you up so you feel you are a player in the plot, not just an observer. It doesn't let you rest: you wake in the night and carry on reading - and as more pieces of the jig-saw fall into place, you begin to see the potential horror just as the protagonists become aware of it. Marvellously ingenious and unexpected. - Scotch Whisky Review
Charles Maclean,s books include Island on the Edge of the World, which won the 1972 Scottish Art,s Council award, The Wolf Children, Target Amin, The Watcher, and Scottish Country. Descended from Lachlan the Wily and Big-Bellied Donald, Sir Charles is the 16th Captain and Keeper of Dunconnel. He lives on the west coast of Scotland where he farms sheep and runs the family hotel, the famous Creggans Inn.
Fritz von der Schulenburg,s photographs have illustrated a number of books including Living in Scotland, Kenneth Turner,s Flower Style, and John Stefandis, Rooms.