cover image Firewalkers


Chris Roberson. Night Shade, $14.99 trade paper (300p) ISBN 978-1-59780-912-2

Roberson’s so-so second supernatural thriller teaming Izzie Lefevre, of the FBI’s Behavioral Analysis Unit, with Recondito, Calif., police detective Patrick Tevake fails to deliver on the promise of 2016’s Firewalk. The pair have learned that humanity is threatened by the Ridden, “hordes of people whose minds had been destroyed while their bodies were being taken over by intelligences from another world.” Izzie carefully sanitizes her reports to her superiors to avoid appearing like a nut, but that becomes harder to do when she revisits the notorious closed case of serial killer Nicholas Fuller. She and her colleagues believed that the so-called Recondito Reaper butchered his victims postmortem “to satisfy some kind of aberrant psychological gratification.” But her discoveries about the Ridden indicate that Fuller was actually following the tradition of a secret Mayan order, the daykeepers, who dismembered the dead to prevent daimons from reanimating the bodies. The plot follows a familiar path from there as Izzie tries to pursue the truth while keeping her job. This lesser variation on the walking dead theme may disappoint zombie fans. (Apr.)