Genre: Occult Horror
Length: 300 Pages
Publisher: Head of Zeus
Release date: March 3, 2022
Synopsis: Nemo Frisby used to be a detective. Now he drives an Uber between billionaire mansions in California. But he never lost the nose for the case – and when his housecleaner Trinity Fox discovers a young woman lying dead in her neighborhood, she persuades him to help her prove it wasn’t suicide.
Their investigation leads them to the Bel Air home of a wealthy movie producer, who built his mansion over a Native American burial site. Ancient mythology tells of a demon who, if unearthed, can imbue evil men with terrible power. But only if the demon is fed by the sacrifice of innocent lives…
Graham Masterton is a true master of his genre, famous for his original, disturbing, and utterly terrifying novels. The Soul Stealer will stand alongside The Manitou as one of horror’s most chilling explorations of the native magic of the ancients.
The Soul Stealer was a painful read and not in any way that was good. I was intrigued with the first half of the synopsis, and a bit leery of the second. Any chance this book had at being good was quickly thrown away. The plot wondered all over the place and like drunk person with their eyes closed. There was no linear path, plot holes at every turn and reading it was like dragging myself over hot coals.
When Trinity and Nemo talk with Margo’s family, just days after her supposed suicide, there is little to no emotion in the exchange. It’s like she just went to say ‘hey, how have you been’. I should have felt some emotion, hell, the character should have.
It was also bit of a stretch that Nemo and Trinity ran from her home to hide out, without being seen. On top of that, Nemo claimed they could get killed, but there was no concern she left her father behind in the house. And, claiming if they hide out for a day their pursuers to give up. Not believable, if finding her was so imperative.
Then we have Zuzana being repeatedly raped and tortured. It was unnecessarily graphic and uncomfortable. Old men forcing themselves on a high school girl isn’t horror, it’s torture porn. And the author was repeatedly name dropping Hollywood actors and locations, to what end I don’t know.
I wasn’t sure if this was a mystery, a horror story or torture porn. But, one thing I know is that half way through the book I had lost all interest. I no longer cared what happened to Zuzana, Trinity or the other characters. They were one dimensional and I never connected with them. I wouldn’t recommend The Soul Stealer for anyone’s TBR list.
Graham Masterson, Biography-
GRAHAM MASTERTON was born in Edinburgh in 1946, and at the age of 17 he joined his local newspaper as a junior reporter. He was appointed deputy editor of Mayfair at the age of 21, and at 24 he became executive editor of Penthouse. After leaving Penthouse, he wrote The Manitou, a horror novel that became his first bestseller and was adapted into a film starring Tony Curtis.
Graham spent twenty-five years as one of the world’s bestselling horror authors before he turned his talent to crimewriting. Inspired by the five years in which he and his late wife lived in Cork, he created a series of novels featuring Katie Maguire, the first female superintendent in the Irish police force. The first book in the Katie Maguire series, White Bones, was published by Head of Zeus in 2012 and became a top-ten bestseller. Graham continues to write thrillers and horror novels alongside the Katie Maguire crime series, which has now sold over a million copies worldwide.