Andrew Pyper is a Toronto author already widely acclaimed for three novels and a collection of short stories. This new book is a murder mystery. It’s pretty menacing and hard to put down.
Part of the intrigue is the Toronto setting. A journalist, single father, who lives off Queen Street, decides to join a creative writing circle to pick up his own imagination. At this time a murderer is striking at random in the city, leaving a trail of mutilation and taunting the police with cryptic notes.
The members of the group read out the shady parts of their lives. One of them told of a child-stealer called the Sandman. The author is intrigued by this, steals the story and develops it into a book that becomes a best-seller.
He will pay dearly for his theft when the woman who had introduced the Sandman originally goes after him, and his own son is kidnapped.
The book delves into the interplay between real-life, and fiction. We see what happens when someone is actually fooled by the distinction and hardly knows how to find the way back to reality. The book is terrifying in spots. It is also very convincing.
Book Review by Anne McDougall