With the help of womanizing friend Nolan Wulf, widower Vic Kimmler packs up his bags and his two little girls and hits the road to take over a stud farm on the Colorado border. What no one told him is that it's haunted, and a town full of maniacs wants him to take over where his father left off.
Abduction, murder, rape, pederasty and cannibalism are a way of life in the rural Kansas town of Denke, a way of life the town's elders hold sacred. These outwardly folksy country people are fighting to preserve a tradition of bloody plunder that goes back more than a century. But when widower Vic Kimmler inherits his father's farm and brings his daughters and fellow ex-cop Nolan Wulf out from Kansas City, the fight becomes even more desperate. With such craziness and evil among the people of Denke, it's merciful that the spirit world is benevolent: Drusilla, the ghost of a 19th-century Denke victim, intervenes occasionally to help the Kimmlers and their friends avert disaster. Epperson ( Dumford Blood ) holds her reader with expert pacing and vivid characters, notably Jinx Lahr, an aged pedophile and the town's unofficial mayor, and his half-brother Gil Schwarz, a feral, crew-cut behemoth with an inherited taste for rape. But the plot, a rehash of mindless, exploitative slasher tales, offers few turns or surprises, and the dialogue is slack and insipid. Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Club alternates . (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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April 01, 1993
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