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Night Warriors

Novel by Graham Masterton (Scotland) 1986.

Graham Masterton is a prolific author, both within the horror genre and without, but throughout his long career he has not been prone to sequelitis. Apart from his Misquamacus trilogy, only this book spawned any successors: this trilogy was completed by Death Dream in 1988 and Night Plague in 1991.

Two men and a woman who have never met discover together the corpse of a young woman on a beach. Lying face down, it appears that she has drowned, but when the trio turn her over they discover a gashing hole in her abdomen containing large eels which have eaten away her stomach and internal organs. Each of the three are then each visited by a character named Springer who informs them that the eels are the spawn of a devil named Yaomauitl, and that they are each to become Night Warriors who, armed with strange abilities and powers, must enter people's dreams and nightmares to track down and destroy this devil.

Masterton once again demonstrates his mastery of the horror genre with another superb novel. But there is a large and inherent flaw: a complete lack of believability in some parts, due no doubt to the cliched title and the depiction of the warriors themselves. The last thing a carefully crafted terror novel needs is the reader imagining the central characters endlessly running down corridors just like some children's cartoon show. The Night Warriors here could be a slightly horrific version of TV's Gladiators or anything out of the Marvel or DC comic universes! Masterton just about covers himself satisfactorily, but the limits of credibility are sometimes breached. In short, it works here, but the sequels start getting very dodgy indeed.

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