Monday, June 1, 2009

David Morrell is back with The Shimmer

The Shimmer by David Morrell
Hardcover due out July 2009
352 pages

I have written a lot over the years about David Morrell, he is the bestselling author who started the international thriller writers organization. He is most well know for his debut and often misunderstood novel First Blood. Over the years he has written action thrillers(Testament), horror (The Totem) and spy novels (Brotherhood of the Rose) to name a few.

His latest novel combines elements of many genres that Morrell has touched on before. What starts as a dark mystery that reminded me early on ‘The Totem’ Morrell’s early horror novel becomes something different. As the pages fly by the tone shifts many times. At times it has an action feel, at times it feels like a mystery or a techno thriller and in the end it is seamlessly blended into an eerie science fiction adventure novel.

The story is about Dan Page, a Santa Fe police officer and pilot whose wife one day disappears. When he follows the trail he ends up in Rostov Texas, which is home to an odd tourist attraction. Rostov is known for a series of lights that behavior strangely on the horizon, according legend they have been seen for hundreds of years.

As he did In 2004 Morrell's novel Creepers he has spun his novel off of true legends. The military and techno conspiracy seems an obvious invention of Morrell's you still find yourself wondering what is real throughout the book.

Morrell usually keeps his books fast paced by writing very short chapters, but not in the Shimmer. Morrell seems to spreading his wings a bit, going in a non-linear structure that includes flashbacks and a perfectly timed back story. What is most impressive is that the mystery is not easy to guess and keeps The Shimmer interesting right up till the last time you close the book.

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