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By Mark Davey
Anoraks abound in a hiking tale which delves into serial killing and features unloved Billy a fish monger’s assistant.
There are many non-fiction works on backpacking and routes for walking but far fewer novels on the joys of traipsing through the trees.
Based in Fort William, Jane Robson’s second novel, I Am The Walker, begins at a pedestrian pace but soon heats up with a series of grisly murders.
It is told through the eyes of a Highland boy in a dead end job who discovers the great outdoors.
For dedicated backpackers there will be a few jarring notes, such as when the hero, Billy, leaves his car wearing waterproof Gortex trousers and later dons his weather gear as it begins to rain.
The novel pokes fun at the equipment necessary for wild walking. There can be few backpackers who haul a full canteen packed in a picnic hamper, as well as a tent, on their forays into the hills.
Billy lures the first victim off the road and soon the spiral of violence and grisly death consumes the novel, till a final clever twist reveals Billy’s true identity.
Author JM Robson. NO_c27JM Robson01_andpet_dog
The front cover of ‘I Am The Walker.’ NO_c27Iamwalker01