I took a walk this lunchtime, to a place I’d never been before. I walked to the park and crossed the river, reading my book as I went, then followed the river. I’d heard that there was an outdoor gym down that way and I was curious to take a look at it, but I’d never visited.
That walk was magical, and I want to put it down in writing before I forget.
I was lucky enough to be approved for an uncorrected draft copy of “Killer” by Jonathan Kellerman. This is the latest in the series about Alex Delaware, a psychiatrist who consults with the Los Angeles Police Department to help them solve crimes, principally with his gay homicide detective friend, Milo Sturgis.
What did I think of the book?
As they enter the tunnel the turbulent flow forces Mark and the boy underwater and spins them end over end. He struggles to hold his breath and the lad’s hand, instinctively curling himself up to protect his head from underwater obstacles. What seems like minutes later the flow steadies and he thrashes to the surface, gratefully sucking in greedy lungfuls of dank air. After a moment he realises that the boy isn’t breathing.
The toad’s laughter is echoed sycophantically by its smaller brethren and Mark grinds his teeth, his hands curling into fists. “What’s so funny about that?” he asks as the throbbing laughter starts to subside, kicking off another round of batrachian hilarity.
The toad clutches slick wet claws to its abdomen and its mouth gapes for a moment, the boy’s slimy face appearing for a brief moment between its lips. The toad gulps him back and then inflates its throat-sac in a series of pulses that leave it massively distended and almost transparent, giving Mark a good look inside. The boy’s eyes are wild with fear. “Help!” he calls, the sound of his voice strangely muted and distorted. He pounds the membrane with his fists, each blow making a deep bass-drum THUMM. Read more…
Mark has to work hard to extract himself from the chilly water, for the purple grass is slippery and he is freighted with wet clothing. Eventually he grabs big handfuls of the long grass and uses them to pull himself slowly up out of the water. The roots make a tearing sound like Velcro coming undone but hold out long enough for him to finally reach the riverbank. He collapses on his back to catch his breath, his palms tingling with a faint burn. When he looks they’re stained with purple streaks.