The Knife tells the story of the last of the 'old-ones' – creatures afflicted with a condition not unlike vampirism: ancient, brutal, unable to withstand the light of the sun. This last old-one has decided to end his life following the suicide of the one he considered his love. The world has gone to ruin, and he, as she had, has had enough.
As he awaits the rising of the sun, to burn, to rise – he is held up at knifepoint, stabbed, and then he burns. His assailant scurries away, back into the belly of the estate, the knife in his pocket, the blood of the old-one seared into it.
It's not long before the knife cuts someone, a baby, Peter. And it is in Peter that the old-one first awakens. Enfeebled, and trapped, in the body of the lowest of the low, the mewling rat child. It is not long before the knife draws blood again, and one-by-one the old one infects the youth of the estate. Consumed by rage and loathing, he must find the knife before he becomes lost and dissipated across the feral underbelly of the city.
The Knife is a short, angry novel, inspired by events such as the murders of Baby P, Jamie Bulger, and Damilola Taylor, and joins the dots between the neglect that led to those terrible events and the explosion of violence that tore through the streets of London in the summer of 2011.
The Knife – a Lord of the Flies for the knife-crime generation.
“The Knife shocks. Markham takes the tiredest concept and re-clothes it in the rags of slumland addiction. You've never read a vampire story like this before… The Trainspotting of supernatural prose!”
Liam Sharp, CCO and co-founder Madefire, Artist on Gears of War, The Hulk, Aliens, and author of 'God Killers'
“An absolutely stonking good read…the Tarantino-esque timeline gripped from start to finish.”
Russ Williamson, Smashwords.com
“One of those 'oh-my-god-wow-couldn't-put-it-down' kinda books – it's so bloody clever. It'll make you think again about some well-covered stories you've seen on the news in the last few years… deals beautifully with issues of youth crime, child neglect, gender and parenthood… did I mention there's vampires?”
Nikki Tarjanyi, Goodreads.com