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Resurrection Dreams

Novel by Richard Laymon (USA) 1988.

Another nine out of ten from the man who doesn't let up. At Ellsworth High, Vicki Chandler is the only person to be nice to the school's token creep, Melvin. She doesn't particularly like the guy, she just doesn't see the point in tormenting him. But when his exhibit at the town's science fair (exhibiting is compulsory for all students) turns out to be an attempt to resurrect a week-dead cheerleader by attaching car batteries to her body, even Vicki draws the line. Returning to Ellsworth to work after qualifying as a doctor, she is dreading meeting Melvin, who has been recently released from a mental institution. But he remembers her kindness and seems to be being especially nice to her. Nevertheless she starts having nightmares, people are going missing or turning up dead, and Vicki has a feeling that Melvin is responsible.

After giving us one of the most memorable scenes in horror fiction early on, Laymon admirably doesn't lose it during the rest of the book. It says something about his talent that he can build on a scene like Melvin's exhibit and keep building to a satisfactory conclusion. More great characters, more great gore and more great freaky behaviour. Most quotes to be found on horror novels should be taken with a pinch of salt, but those to be found on Laymon novels are surprisingly accurate: Dean Koontz - "No one writes like Laymon and you're going to have a good time with anything he writes"; Horrorstruck - "Readers turn the pages so fast they leave burn marks on the paper"; and Dan Marlowe - "Stephen King without a conscience". All three are becoming increasingly accurate with each successive novel. Don't miss out.


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