Jukes Wahler is a psychiatrist working in Manhattan – a city filled with people who could use his services, but is he soon to be in need of a psychiatrist himself?
One day, while looking out through a deli window, Jukes sees a tremendously beautiful redheaded woman walking past. She turn to look at him and then continues on down the block, disappearing in the crowd of people. It is a memorable moment, but it will become a bit more.
Shortly after seeing the stunning beauty, a patient tells Jukes that a woman has been stalking him – not an ordinary woman, but a banshee (an Irish angel of death) – a beautiful redhead. It’s probably just coincidence since the patient is generally quite delusional.
Jukes will forget about this when something more immediate gets his attention – his sister and her abusive boyfriend have gone missing. One man has offered to help find them … an ex-IRA commando who is the leader of a radical terrorist group in Ireland.
This book is part horror novel, part detective mystery, and part supernatural fantasy. Each of these is a high-selling category, so this should be a clear hit with a lot of different readers, but it doesn’t always work out that way.
I love using classic mythology in modern fiction and we haven’t seen a lot of Irish spirits or creatures, so this may have been my favorite part of this book.
The detective mystery aspect is also quite nicely done. I do like the classic, hard-boiled-style detective, and we get that here in spades with our New York cop. I think that a straight-forward mystery with this cop would have a good deal of appeal to readers such as myself.
While I like a good horror novel (and I’m okay with splatterpunk as horror), the horror doesn’t work too well here. It’s extraneous and just doesn’t add anything to the story.
For a hard-boiled detective story, this moves along just right. But for a supernatural thriller/horror novel, the pace is too slow.
Looking for a good book? Shade of Pale by Greg Kihn has just about everything … a New York cop, Irish IRA fighters, and even a banshee, but the various storylines move at an uneven pace, bringing the enjoyment level down a notch.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.
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Shade of Pale
author: Greg Kihn
publisher: Open Road Media Mystery & Thriller
ebook, 256 pages