Read This!: The Dead Letters

The Dead Letters
By Tom Piccirilli

Five years ago, Eddie Whitt’s daughter became the first victim of a serial killer known as Killjoy. Whitt never stopped searching for him&–not after the police gave up, not after Killjoy began sending him insane, taunting letters, and not even after the killer quit his lunatic rampage and faded from the scene.

But now the madman has returned. In some bizarre form of repentance, Killjoy begins kidnapping infants from abusive homes and delivering them to the parents of his original victims. In a strange turnabout, Killjoy becomes a media hero, a savior of unwanted “changeling children”, and to those he once tormented he is now transformed into a benefactor.

Wow.  It’s tough to say anything beyond that.  This was the best book I’ve read in a loooooong time.  I can’t think of anything else that comes close, really.  More crime thriller than anything else, The Dead Letters is both tight and atmospheric.  The character of Whitt is sympathtic and unsettling at once.  We feel for him, but we see the madnes he’s slipping into as he hunts Killjoy.  I can’t remember the last time I’ve read a more fully realized character.

And the bad guys in this novel are truly bad.  Whether it’s Killjoy with his trail of pompous-yet-nonsensical letters or the old woman and her cult who follows the god Mucus Thorn-In-Brain, the antagonists drip evil from every pore.

Piccirilli keeps the story rolling, building momentum until it’s almost at car crash speed.  The last few pages couldn’t turn fast enough.  This book will leave you spent.

Recommendation: Must Read!