Saturday, 27 July 2013

Jason Stadtlander

The Steel Van Man is a psychological thriller that turns the genre upside down.  It makes you question your previous thoughts on the subject - never a bad thing!

The Steel Van Man The Steel Van Man

My review - 

This novel turns the crime/thriller genre on its head. We spend just over half of the book trying, with the police and the FBI, to find the identity of ‘the hunter’, the one who slays couples in a bizarre execution ritual. We are carefully mis-directed initially. For much of the second half of the book, we know who that hunter is. Not only are we aware of the identity but we gradually learn of the motives. The question now is, can the hunter’s two separate lives be maintained? This, strangely, had me hoping for the hunter’s success in evading discovery. Although there are scenes depicting the kills, this book is not of the slasher/bloodfest style of horror story. This is a subtle telling of a strange tale.

It’s a cleverly written book which manages to manipulate the reader’s usual instincts and what could have been a devastating ending for this person twists away to allow for possibly further development. I do hope that happens. It’s an intriguing idea, that someone’s early upbringing, complemented by a deep experience a little later in life, could result in the creation of a ‘monster’ who kills – but not indiscriminately. If you are at all interested in the psychology of a killer, this book is a must! I enjoyed it thoroughly. 

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