Friday, July 29, 2011
Bestial by Ray Garton
(pb; 2009: crossover sequel to Night Life and Ravenous)
From the back cover
"Something very strange is happening in the coastal California town of Big rock. Several residents have died in unexplained, particularly brutal ways, many torn apart in animal attacks. And there's always that eerie howling late at night. . .
"You might think there's a werewolf in town. But you'd be wrong. It's not just one werewolf, but the whole town that's gradually transforming. Bit by bit, as the infection spreads, the werewolves are becoming more and moe powerful. In fact, humans may soon be the minority, mere prey for their hungry neighbors. Is it too late for the humans to fight back? Did they ever have a chance from the start?"
Bestial is an excellent follow-up to Night Life and Ravenous, one that is better than its predecessors.
Karen Moffett and Gavin Keoph, the investigators from Night Life, check out the disappearances and "animal attacks" in Big Rock, at the behest of best-selling horror researcher/author Martin Burgess (also a key character in Night Life).
When they get there, they quickly discover that Big Rock is a bad place to be, if you're not a werewolf.
Garton varies up the plot structure of Bestial, to its benefit: in abandoning the attack/rape/werewolf-out focus-structure of Ravenous (which was a set-up novel), and melding it with the investigative tone of Live Girls and Night Life, he's elevated this 'werewolves in Big Rock' offering to new cinematic, humorous and engrossing heights.
Garton's penchant for reads-like-real-life, open-ended finishes is once again in evidence in Bestial - I have little doubt that another werewolf sequel may find its way to publication soon.
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