Bring Me Children

David Martin, Author
David Martin, Author Random House (NY) $16 (289p) ISBN 978-0-394-58471-3
Mass Market Paperbound - 352 pages - 978-0-671-88611-0
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Prominent TV anchorman John Lyon breaks down on camera after discussing the escalating rate of violence against children. Later, an African American woman exhorts Lyon to seek out Mason Quindell, a West Virginia doctor and ``monster''; then the woman throws herself in front of an oncoming taxi. So begins a convoluted tale of malevolence by the author of Lie to Me --a story that frequently threatens to bog down in its own excesses. Traveling to West Virginia, Lyon encounters the dead woman's granddaughter, who aids him in uncovering the sinister goings-on chez Quindell. Encountering voodoo, barbaric guard dogs and a dwarf with a severely limited vocabulary, readers may feel that Martin has tossed a few too many bizarre ingredients into his grisly goulash. Moreover, Lyon's sexual escapades seem gratuitous, especially in their violence, and the author's attempts at humanizing his protagonist merely decelerate the plot. And though Quindell fascinates as he repels, he bears a striking resemblance to Thomas Harris's archfiend, Dr. Hannibal Lecter. Aficionados of this genre, however, may forgive all upon reaching the finale--a Grand Guignol affair which introduces Mr. Gigli, a wiry, particularly sinister torturer extraordinaire. 50,000 first printing; BOMC featured alternate. (July)
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