cover image The Beast of Barcroft

The Beast of Barcroft

Bill Schweigart. Random/Hydra, $2.99 ISBN 978-0-8041-8136-5

A vicious otherworldly creature terrorizes a neighborhood in Schweigart’s swift and breezy suburban creature feature. Ben McKelvie is recovering from a failed relationship and adjusting to life alone in the house he bought for himself and his now ex-fiancée. When his dog, Bucky, is killed by a creature right out of a nightmare, he finds purpose: to figure out what killed his dog, and maybe even get his life back. He’s pretty sure that it has something to do with his deceased next-door neighbor, an eccentric woman whose animal hoarding attracted rats and drove her neighbors to take action. Soon, the fanged menace is attacking people, and Lindsay Clark, a Smithsonian National Zoo curator, is brought in. Ben convinces her that there may be more to this creature than meets the eye, and she reluctantly enlists a crypto- zoologist for help. Transcending cliché, Ben and Lindsay become friends, not lovers. Readers who appreciate a B-movie sensibility, affable characters, and a sense of fun along with their scares will find much to enjoy. (Nov.)