cover image Cemetery of Angels

Cemetery of Angels

Noel Hynd. Zebra, $19.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-8217-5029-2

Bill and Rebecca Moore are an ordinary middle-aged couple raising two children in suburban Connecticut when an unsuccessful attempt on Rebecca's life by a mysterious stranger leaves her with a nasty case of post-traumatic stress. To help her recover, Bill suggests a move to L.A., where they buy and renovate an old house in a posh neighborhood. It seems, however, that the house hosts a particularly persistent ghost named Ronny, an ex-actor who apparently has emerged from the small private cemetery adjacent to the backyard. When both children disappear from the house with no sign of forced entry, LAPD gumshoe Ed Van Allen suspects the Moores of murder, although Rebecca gamely tries to convince him the ghost did it. Turning the implausible into the possible as the case unfolds, Hynd lets the evidence build to a genuinely terrifying climax that features earthbound criminals as well as a not-so-subtle example of divine retribution. The author rarely diverts from the conventions of formula, but his slow unveiling of supernatural events and of the emotional lives of his characters is so believable and authentically rendered that the story line ensnares readers nonetheless. This is yet another adroitly crafted thriller from Hynd, who in recent books has managed a crossover from political thrillers (Flowers from Berlin) to horror (A Room for the Dead) with style and aplomb. (Aug.)