Wicked Dead: Lurker
Stefan Petrucha and Thomas Pendleton
Harper, Sep 2007, $7.99
Anne, Mary, Shirley and Daphne take turns telling a haunting Wicked Dead story. Anne is first as she relates Lurker to her pals at the run down Lockwood Orphanage.
In her mind teenager Mandy lives an ideal life even factoring in her boyfriend Dale who messed up real bad so she dumped him. Everything is fine and apparently normal for instance Naughty Nic skipped school. However, normalcy crashes for everyone when they learn Nic failed to attend because someone murdered her. Not just Mandy is shocked by the tragedy; the entire Lake Crest High School personalizes the homicide and the town is traumatized that such an act could happen here.
Stunned although not a close friend of the late girl, Mandy finds herself seeing visions of an unknown person, who she begins to believe is Nic’s killer dubbing him the Witchman. An apologetic Dale wants Mandy to forgive him and take him back while she is considering Kyle the Internet dude she has not met, but would like to soonest.
LURKER is the first of four horror novellas as each of the ghostly female “pajama party” pals stare at bones and tell a tale of death. Mandy is a terrific lead character holding the tale together while fearing she will meet the Witchman who haunts her sleep. The murder mystery and the aftermath reaction to it especially of the victim’s school peers bring a reality to this entertaining tale with a stunning fascinating otherworld twist. Although targeting young teens, boomers also will appreciate this opening Wicked Death thriller.