The BBC has commissioned two TV series based on books by crime writer Mark Billingham, the author revealed on “BBC Breakfast” this morning (21st April).
The first series will be based on Billingham’s 2008 novel, In the Dark (Sphere) and the second is based on his new novel being published this Thursday (23rd April), Time of Death (Little, Brown). BBC Drama North is adapting both books. Filming will begin early next year and both series will launch in autumn 2016. No casting details have been revealed yet.
In the Dark is a standalone novel, which starts with what appears to be a gang initiation killing on a rainy night in London. However, pregnant police officer Helen Weeks uncovers something much more sinister.
Time of Death also centres around Weeks, the girlfriend of Billingham’s long-running character, Detective Inspector Tom Thorne. In the book, two schoolgirls are abducted in the small Warwickshire town of Polesford, where Weeks grew up. When it’s revealed that family man Stephen Bates has been arrested, she heads to Polesford with Thorne to support Bates’ wife, who is an old schoolfriend. As residents and media bay for Bates’ blood, a decomposing body is found. The police believe that they have their murderer in custody, but Thorne believes otherwise. Time of Death will be published in hardback at an r.r.p of £18.99.
Billingham’s Tom Thorne novels have already been adapted for television in a six-part series “Thorne”, which was broadcast on Sky One and starred David Morrissey in the title role.