Stranger Things: Darkness on the Edge of Town by Adam Christopher 

 March 5, 2023

By  BookishBearx

Chief Jim Hopper reveals long-awaited secrets to Eleven about his old life as a police detective in New York City, confronting his past before the events of the hit show Stranger Things. 

Christmas, Hawkins, 1984. All Chief Jim Hopper wants is to enjoy a quiet first Christmas with Eleven, but his adopted daughter has other plans. Over Hopper’s protests, she pulls a cardboard box marked “New York” out of the basement—and the tough questions begin. Why did Hopper leave Hawkins all those years ago? What does “Vietnam” mean? And why has he never talked about New York?

Although he’d rather face a horde of demogorgons than talk about his own past, Hopper knows that he can’t deny the truth any longer. And so begins the story of the incident in New York—the last big case before everything changed…

Summer, New York City, 1977. Hopper is starting over after returning home from Vietnam. A young daughter, a caring wife, and a new beat as an NYPD detective make it easy to slip back into life as a civilian. But after shadowy federal agents suddenly show and seize the files about a series of brutal, unsolved murders, Hopper takes matters into his own hands, risking everything to discover the truth.

Soon Hopper is undercover among New York’s notorious street gangs. But just as he’s about to crack the case, a blackout rolls across the boroughs, plunging Hopper into a darkness deeper than any he’s faced before.

Stranger Things: Darkness on the Edge of Town is a spin off story from the hit Netflix TV show Stranger Things. It is a Science Fiction novel that tells us more about Detective Hopper and what happened to him before Hawkins Indiana and Eleven. We go back to a time when he was an NYPD detective in the Homicide department, living in New York with his wife and child, when he starts working a strange and very dangerous case.

I was very excited to start reading this. I am a massive fan of the TV show and all things horror and sci-fi. It really does seem like something right up my street. Being such a big fan of the TV show, I had high hopes for this novel. I think this is the 2nd official novel out of 3 but, I found it to be a good stand alone book and didn’t feel like I was missing much (if any) of the story by not reading the first.

The book itself, I did quite like. It skipped between small scenes in the present of El and Hopper talking in their cabin and then larger chapters detailing the story of the case in the 70’s back in New York. Everything flowed really nicely, and the small scenes with El and Hopper brought a little warmth and light to the story, adding a nice break to the intense story that Hopper is telling. I liked how we got to see their relationship as father and newly adopted daughter start to grow and that trust start to be built. It was a nice sub story to the crime case story.

With the actual case that Hopper is detailing I thought it was a really cool story. It was creepy and unnerving, I was on the edge of my seat and could not for the life of me decide where the story was going. I couldn’t predict what the outcome was going to be. Part of me was expecting it to be a story about how Hopper lost his wife and daughter, Sara as in the TV show it is mentioned that they aren’t with him anymore, but it wasn’t. I was a little disappointed that it wasn’t this story as Hopper is probably one of my favourite characters in the TV show and I really want to know the background to his story!

Overall, I loved the book. If you are a fan of the TV Show, I think you’d love this book too. I really want to get the other two books now. Is it time to break the book buying ban I have worked so hard to keep in place for 2021? Maybe? We will soon see!

Star Rating /5


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