Monday, March 17, 2008

The Edge of Reason-Melinda Snodgrass

The Edge of Reason
Melinda Snodgrass
Tor, May 2008, $24.95
ISBN: 9780765315168

Former concert pianist but now Albuquerque police officer Richard Oort may be stunned by what he sees, but he reacts. Naked strange beings, obviously not human though what they are Robert is not sure of, chase after a young girl. His efforts to rescue a sorceress are noticed by affluent Kenntnis, who thinks he may have finally found the perfect warrior in his eternal war with the Old Ones.

Richard learns just who recruited him as Kenntnis has been called the Serpent and Lucifer amongst other derogatory names. The cop also finds out that the Old Ones encourage human religions as they feed on the emotional frenzy and suffering of diehard believers. Kenntnis and his Lumina supporters insist they want free will for mankind while their opponents need human dependency. As his mother commits suicide, Richard with no time to grieve, has doubts that he is fighting for the good guys as he has been indoctrinated throughout his life that Lucifer is the tricky devil while his new commander in chief insists the opponents won the propaganda war.

This is a terrific action-packed apocalypse thriller that will have the audience pondering the roles in society of organized religion, formal education, Lovecraftian mythos, and the Albuquerque Police Department. The story line is fast-paced yet readers will empathize with the beleaguered human hero as he struggles with comprehending a supernatural war that has gone on from the moment Eve seduced Adam into taking a bite and has spilled onto the streets of his hometown. His dealings with the stick man and associates, a homeless bum who happens to be a God (the RFK theory of the deity comes to mind) and a new Dark Age driven by the Old Ones but supported by human fundamentalists who see power in the golden rule of those with the gold make the rule are fascinating to watch. Melinda Snodgrass provides a strong thriller that will send her readers over THE EDGE OF REASON.

Harriet Klausner

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