Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Evil and the Details by Roy A. Teel, Jr.

By Shawn

There's a scourge on the streets of Los Angeles.  A serial killer is stalking, capturing, torturing, and killing young teenage boys.  FBI Profilers Special Agent Steve Hoffman and Special Agent John Swenson are working with Los Angeles County Sheriff's Detective Jim O'Brian to catch this elusive killer.  However, with each turn the investigation takes into the murders, the more puzzling they become.  The deeper the investigation goes, the darker the soul of its source.  It's a race against not only time; it is also a race against The Iron Eagle, who they all know is working to unravel the mystery and capture the killer.  Who will solve the crimes and end the terror?  Only time will tell.  (taken from the back of the book)

Oh this is so terribly hard to review without putting up spoilers!  I'm going to try to be  tricky about it so that I don't give too much away, but I have a few things that must be said.  Firstly, for nearly a decade I have had the same plans for what to do with my body when I die.  Thanks to this book, I've had to change them.  Anyone wanting to know more, feel free to email me and I'll be happy to discuss!  However, the fact that Teel read my  mind and used it in a book, well I find that just downright fascinating and I love that I'm not the only person with the idea!

Secondly, if you have difficulty reading about violence in relation to children, stop reading this review right now.  This is not the book for you.  It has a lot to offer, but the violence/children portion(s)  of the book will be too difficult to handle and the rest of the story will make zero sense.  Find something better to read and if you need some ideas, give me a holler and I'll be happy to give you some suggestions.

Third, if you're a Dexter fan, this is the book for you!  No, this guy is nothing like Dexter.  The similarities occur with the thinking behind the actions of The Iron Eagle.  Though he's really nothing like Dexter (from Dexter...HBO fame, not Dexter's Laboratory, the cartoon), there are enough similarities in character that you'll find The Iron Eagle fascinating to behold.

OK now to the actual review part!

When I first began reading, I had a pretty difficult time.  The storytelling is great and it begins immediately with intrigue.  It's the format of the thing that gave me trouble.  I'm used to paragraphs and dialogue being separated.  In this book, the dialogue is simply included in the paragraph so you have to read pretty carefully to keep track of what's going on and who's saying what.  This took a bit for my brain to bend to since I've been trained since a very early age to read the dialogue as banter in my head.  I'm so used to doing this, that I don't even think about it.  I'll admit though, that by the fourth or fifth  chapter I had easily adapted to Teel's writing format and no longer even noticed it.  It was actually a little tricky going back to regularly formatted books!  I don't know if this is something that will catch on in future, but it actually made the reading both quicker and easier once I adjusted to it.

There really isn't a lot as far as mystery to this book.  We have the bad guys and we know why they are.  We, as readers, have all the nasty little details and get to sit back and watch the play unfold from each person's perspective.  Nasty being the key word there.  Just when you think you've read it all and there's nothing horrific left for you to read, you pick up a book like this.  Most of us have become so numb thanks to all the horror media out there that we read violence and gore quite easily and digest it just like we would a cardboard meal from a drive through place.  Teel really pushes the boundaries here though and it's more like digesting razor blades dipped in acid than it is our normally tasty cardboard terror.  Now, let me say, if you enjoy the horror and terror, this is a really good thing for you.  If you're not so much into that, this probably isn't the book for you.

Over all, I had a blast with this book.  Though it took some adjusting, I found the writing style and story telling to be to my taste and was even a little squeamish throughout parts of the book.  As a horror fan, that rates this book as a success for me.  Toss in the fact that we have so many intriguing character studies, and you have a winner.

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