Top positive review
Spare, Intelligent Writing and Plenty of Spilt Blood
on 21 May 2012
Last year I discovered Detective Bobby MacAuley in this author's excellent first novel, Black Beast. He's back with the second book in the MacAuley Clan series, LOST, and this one too is a winner.
The plot moves at a breakneck clip as strange events start occurring in a small town up in Idaho, where Bobby Mac's brother, Jax, serves as chief of police. A man murders his wife and one daughter, telling authorities the devil abducted his other daughter. Then two other girls are kidnapped. Soon it becomes clear that the forces of evil are arrayed in legions, with their superhuman strength and speed, against the puny and poorly organized forces of good. No wonder Jax feels out of his element.
Guthrie has a knack for mixing a detective story with world-ending horror. A lot is at stake -- you could even say everything is at stake. The MacAuley clan goes back a thousand years in Scotland, back to a time when people were quicker to label something evil, when they saw it. But there are also fascinating links to American Indians and their arcane languages in the Pacific Northwest.
LOST has everything I want in a book: spare, intelligent writing, a riveting plot, characters I love and some I love to hate, beautiful descriptions of the land and of people, a touch of ancient history, and large quantities of spilt blood. I love it when one of the evil guys says to Bobby Mac, telling him how easy it was to break out of prison, "It was like Mayberry RFD up there." Don't start reading LOST unless you're ready to go the distance, because you won't want to put it down.