Mysterious Book Report No. 416
by John Dwaine McKenna
Have you ever driven down the Interstate Highway and noticed all of the trucks cruising along with you . . . then wondered what’s inside of them? Maybe even speculated about what they’re doing, or where they’re going, maybe even asked yourself What happens after they get there?
Perhaps you’ve been too busy with other, more pressing concerns than to daydream like that, but not NY Times best-selling author Christopher Rice. He’s written an electrifying Sci-Fi thriller entitled Blood Victory, (Thomas & Mercer, PB, $15.95, 318 pages, ISBN 978-1542014717), in which an ordinary woman named Charlotte Rowe becomes the unwitting test subject for a secret experimental drug. It gives her super-human strength and the ability to instantly heal any sickness or wound, no matter how grievous or life-threatening. Unfortunately however, the effect is only temporary. After three and a half hours, like Cinderella, Charlotte Rowe returns to her everyday self.
The drug, which cost hundreds of millions of dollars to develop, is owned by a group of tech moguls who’re hoping to sell it and make billions of dollars from governments looking to develop armies of near-invincible soldiers. But the drug, which is called Zypraxon, has a nasty side-effect. Charlotte Rowe is the only human test subject who’s still alive after being injected with it. All the others killed themselves immediately after being innoculated. That makes “Charley” as she likes to be called, immensely valuable to the Consortium who financed Zypraxon’s development . . . and she’s agreed to field-test it if allowed to do so on her own terms. Her terms are based on a series of childhood traumas and they’re simple. She wants to be the bait that attracts serial killers of women. Charley’s willing to allow herself to be captured by one of the known monsters—as identified by the consortium, whose resources stretch far and wide—then be taken to a killing site where the killer will learn that not all women are helpless. Not by a long shot.
And remember those ubiquitous white box trucks we started the article with? The ones that seem to be everywhere? That’s what a psychopath named Cyrus Mattingly drives around in . . . and it’s a rolling chamber of horror. The truck is where he plans to break Charley’s spirit, as well as her mind, by terrorizing her while he drives to a rendezvous with a mysterious person he calls Mother . . . where the real terror will begin in this twisted, utterly fascinating dive into the other side of normality. It’ll leave you with goose bumps that’ll last for at least a week!
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