Reviewed by David Brzeski
It’s a bad day when Lieutenant Joe Connors, IAB is called to a cop killing on the South Side. He’s not prepared to discover that he knows the victim—Johnny Provan, his ex-partner and ex-best friend.
What caused Provan to come running out of that house, raving like a lunatic… to aim his gun at his rookie partner, forcing the kid to shoot him?
When Joe visits the house, to interview the tenants, he finds more questions than answers. The house is not what it seems. In a completely original variant on the classic “haunted house” concept, this is a place where the lonely and grieving can reconnect with their loved ones—but there are rules. Johnny Provan didn’t follow those rules, and soon Joe would discover that he couldn’t either.
Each tenant makes their connection through a different medium. In Joe’s case it’s the John Huston movie version of ‘The Maltese Falcon’. William Meikle deftly weaves in dialogue from the film, as Joe starts to forge his connection with the beyond.
This is a story of love, betrayal and loss, which would have made a great ‘Twilight Zone’ episode. DarkFuse are becoming a major force to be reckoned with in the area of macabre fiction and they really seem to be bringing out the best in William Meikle, possibly because he works particularly well within the novella format.