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Johnstone, Doug

Entry updated 31 July 2023. Tagged: Author.

(1970-    ) Scottish musician, journalist and author, active from the mid 1990s; his first novel, Tombstoning (2006), like almost all his work, is nonfantastic, set in Scotland, and can be read as a thriller [not listed below]. He may be best known for the Skelfs sequence beginning with A Dark Matter (2019), following the complex lives of the inheritors of a funeral home who also, inter alia, work as private investigators, with some intimations of the supernatural. Johnstone is of specific sf interest for The Space Between Us (2023), a First Contact tale set in Edinburgh; its three protagonists suffer identical strokes, recover immediately but find themselves consequentially sensitized to a fugitive Alien, who is on the run – the contemporary resonance of its refugee status is manifest but not insisted upon – from a government whose actions can be seen as problematic. [JC]

Doug Johnstone

born Arbroath, Angus, Scotland: 27 July 1970

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