THE SHADOWKILLER by Matthew Scott Hansen

THE SHADOWKILLER

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A tale about Bigfoot filled with waxen prose, stick-figure characters and bad-TV dialogue.

Hansen, whose last product was 2004’s It’s in the Book, Bob!, a Bob Eubanks bio co-written with the gameshow god, isn’t big on subtlety. Boom! Trees splinter as a Weyerhaeuser truck driver mysteriously disappears in the Washington woods. Ty Greenwood, a Seattle dot-com tycoon, grabs a flagon of single malt, leaps into his 1956 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing and hurtles through the night to kill himself, freaked because he’s seen Bigfoot. Top-dollar lawyers go hiking and get crunched by Sasquatch, one of them departing earth like so: “…his neck had just suffered the catastrophic C2-C3 break, rendering his body from his shoulders to his toes into just so much flaccid meat.” An ancient Indian chief wakes screaming on a Hollywood movie set, remembering his encounter decades past with…you guessed it, Bigfoot. A newscaster, bitchy but “drop-dead gorgeous,” schemes toward the big time by getting the scoop on Hideous Hairy. And on and on. The Scary Movie antics mildly entertain, but what’s truly frightening is that Hansenworld seems inhabited solely by broad-shouldered dudes, darling children, crusty-but-fair newspaper editors and guys with grunts for names (Mitch, Jack, Ben, Ty, Mac). Even more spine-searing are sentences like this, describing a hawk circling overhead: “Deep inside his small brain a circuit was receiving a vibration on the frequency band just slightly above that of his material world.” Yeah, just like that.

Story: not scary. Writing: terrifying.

Pub Date: Jan. 9th, 2007
ISBN: 0-7432-9473-4
Page count: 448pp
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1st, 2006