"My name is Declan Shea. I never thought I was monster.
"My life changed overnight. I was driving home from a gig when a tramp stepped out in front of my car. I killed him. I know I did. But no-one believed me. The medical staff at the hospital insisted he was the result of some sort of hallucination, because of trauma sustained during the accident. I tried to convince them otherwise, but the more I protested, the more obvious it became to them that I had damaged more than just my ribs in the crash, so I started to lie to keep them happy. I pretended he wasn't there. But he was. He was everywhere. And he was determined to destroy my life and take away everything I loved in revenge.
"How do you fight a monster no-one else can see?
"This is what he reduced my life to. I stopped being Declan Shea that night and became someone else entirely. I became a monster."
Laughing Boy's Shadow, international best-selling author Steven Savile's debut novel, charts the descent of an ordinary man into a murky world of very human monsters, grief, and madness as he wrestles to come to terms with who he is and just what he is capable of in the name of love. Published in the US, Sweden, and recently sold to Germany, this is Laughing Boy's Shadow's first appearance in Savile's native land.
©2006 Steven Savile (P)2012 David N. Wilson
"A story about Death written by a man who has clearly consorted with devils.” (T.M. Wright, author of A Manhattan Ghost Story)
"A raw, gritty novel: part social commentary, part philosophy, part fantasy. Savile handles his episodes of graphic violence skillfully, eschewing cliches and shock tactics in favor of understated, detached narration, and the result is a genuinely chilling portrait of total alienation. Savile's novel is original, smart, and well-written; his disturbing images and bleak prose and both thought-provoking and genuinely unsettling." (Rue Morgue)
"The tale is compelling. The protagonist Declan Shea's transformational journey through the underground; his confrontation with the marvellously named Crohak and the Rookery; the iconic imagery cheerfully interwoven with allusions cribbed from L. Frank Baum, Lewis Carroll and Joseph Campbell make for a dark intriguing sojourn through a mythic urban landscape of bewildering wonderment." (Fear Zone)
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