My Review of Symphony of Blood: A Hank Mondale Supernatural Case
Hank Mondale is a down-on-his-luck private investigator who drinks too much and gambles too much. In need of some quick cash he takes a new case where the rich client has an unusual problem: a monster is trying to kill his daughter. Hank doesn’t believe in monsters, but takes the case anyway, only to find the facts leading him into the unknown.
Symphony of Blood was a chilling delight to read. The book is basically divided into three parts, with parts one and three telling the story from Hank’s point of view. These sections are an old school, hard-boiled mystery story, unfolding Hank’s investigation slowly, and playing out the tension before we return to his voice for the conclusion. Both parts are well told, have nice flow with gritty atmosphere and substance, engaging characters, and I enjoyed what I read. But it was the second part of the novel that truly excelled for me, when the author unexpectedly switched points of view and told the story through the killer/monster’s eyes. Here, the story is woven from an alien perspective and draws the reader in with fascination, repulsion and even sympathy. Secrets hinted at are now revealed and the subtle contrasts and truths give depth to the plot. I adored this section of the novel and the sudden change between characters was seamless.
I did have some small disappointment with the ending, though. It wasn’t that it was badly written or a cheat, and it wrapped up all the threads conclusively, but it just felt a bit detached to me. I think I would have liked something a bit less restrained. Still, I can happily recommend Symphony of Blood as a great book.
Where you can find Symphony of Blood: