Fiction Reviews

The Bloody Man

(1998) Mick Lewis, Citron Press, 5.99, pbk, 223pp, ISBN 0-7544-0009-3

Another offering from the 'author's co-operative' (not vanity press, no-no-no), which actually isn't too bad. Certainly it didn't suffer from the lack of proof reading and poor typesetting that other offerings have. And Lewis can write, well, a bit. But then the stupid sod spends 219 pages setting the reader up for a climax that he singularly fails to deliver. The plot, for what it's worth, is that a kid runs away from his family, seeks refuge in Sawney Bean's cave, and comes under the influence of the cannibal's skull. Several years later, the brother, having blocked all this from his mind, is stalked (for want of a better way of putting it) after running into the returned kid in a pub. Cue 219 pages of quite good set-up for the final showdown, then disappoint readers... Citron Press on the whole is a relatively good idea, especially in these days when publishers choose books purely on their commercial potential, rather than on quality, but having stated this as their raison d'etre, Citron has so far turned out crap that wouldn't have been bought anyway. Maybe next time... 

Tony Chester

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