A debut horror novel saddled with by-the-numbers spooks.
“The thing chuckled, a deep, jarring sound. A long, slow line of spittle dripped from the corner of its mouth and spun itself to the floor. It grinned at him.” Billy Smith, who functions as Kenyon’s sort-of-hero, is the unfortunate human being grinned at. In Billy’s view, however, ghastly, ghostly grins are the least he’s deserved ever since the awful day when, driving drunk, he killed a mother and her two small children. Now he has bad dreams and hears nocturnal voices urging him to behavior that’s both incomprehensible and impossible to resist. As a result, he assaults beautiful Angel, junkie and prostitute, chloroforms and kidnaps her. But Angel turns out to be a kindred spirit, and the pair fall deeply in love. Among other things, Billy finds in Angel “the taste of candy apples.” So he need no longer handcuff her to keep her docile. Angel has been having her own terrible dreams and hearing unsettling voices, and when the two arrive in backwater White Falls, Maine, it’s as if in response to the same infernal forces that set the stage for the obligatory battle between good and evil.
Ghostly cackles that will raise few hackles.