Velvet: A Novel of Suspense

Alec Kalla, Author, M. J. Sullivan, Author Foul Play Press $19 (221p) ISBN 978-0-88150-264-0
A blend of mystery, New Age treatise and conservationist tract, this slim first fiction from two Coloradans adds up to less than the sum of its parts. In the hollow narrative, rugged mountain man Hank Eston, who lives in the rural wilds not far from Denver, gets a call for help from his former girlfiend, a masseuse and mystic, whose lover has died after an apparent beating. Hank, who quickly runs afoul of the local law (who are painted in broad strokes), calls on his buddy, Zen-student Brian, to bail him out after a second bruised body is discovered. The authors offer their readers subjects rather than suspects, discoursing on real estate, hunting squabbles, philosophy and religion in debates that tend to turn nasty. With its ideologically schizophrenic hero (who borders on sexist), forced metaphors and prose that is either elliptical or padded, this tale launches a projected series that is already in need of an overhaul. (July)
Reviewed on: 05/31/1993
Release date: 06/01/1993
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