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Last Call by Sean Costello

Last Call

by Sean Costello

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The world is full of novels about serial killers. It seems to be almost as popular a genre as zombies. I have shied away from such books, even though Amazon is full of free Kindle offers for books that get very high ratings. I got this book free from the author after joining his mailing list, which I did after reading his book Squall. Squall was a creative, extremely violent tale about drugs and contract killers and crazy girlfriends and birthday parties and lots of other stuff in a great Canadian setting. I enjoyed it a lot and gave it four stars, so I decided I would read Last Call, even though the subject matter was not something I would usually want to deal with. (Of course, like everyone else I read Red Dragon, The Silence of the Lambs, etc. But those books make the serial killer an intellectual celebrity and are not quite as full of stomach-churning details as this one is. Luckily, the book doesn't focus on the killer--known as the Dentist for his particular obsession with teeth. The scenes with the killer and his victims are extremely explicit, however. To his credit, the author warns the reader ahead of time. Costello works as an Anesthesiologist in his day job, and the book is inspired by an interview with a serial killer during his residency. The reality of serial killings may even be worse than what this book represents, in fact. Luckily, there's a lot of story to go along with the killings. Costello weaves in a tale of a daughter rediscovering the father her mother kicked out of house when she was an infant, depicts the father's alcohol and drug-strewn existence in the interim, as well as the daughter's ex-boyfriend's own addiction story. So there are lots of positive things here, mixed in with the terrible scenes of torture and violence. Of course, we know who is going to end up as the killer's next kidnap victim. Still, Costello keeps us riveted to the story, and the last half of the book moves very quickly. There are a few implausibilities and cliches here and there, but the author is a very good writer, certainly not an amateur dabbling with publishing since it's so easy to self-publish an ebook. But overall, this story isn't as slick or inventive as Squall, and for that I give it 3 1/2 stars. I would be very interested in reading some of Costello's other books, but I hope they won't be as dark and painful as this one. ( )
  datrappert | Mar 5, 2016 |
In The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris a serial killer named Buffalo Bill kidnaps a US senators daughter called Catherine Martin and keeps her hostage in a dry well. In Last Call by Sean Costello a deranged serial killer name "Bobcat" kidnaps young girls keeping them hostage in a well before murdering and disposing of their remains. Is there a similarity between the stories only the reader can make that decision.

Trish loves her mum Sally, she has just purchased her first car, and has been accepted as a veterinary student. She then discovers that her dad Jim, a recovering alcoholic, is alive and Dean an old boyfriend from the past is now back in her life. It's all going so well until one day she attracts the attention of Bobcat and she must hope and pray that Jim and Dean will rescue her.

This is a very average story I read whilst recovering from a hernia operation and most certainly some of the scenes involving Bobcat made me feel somewhat uncomfortable. His hobby is to remove the teeth from his victims and create attractive jewellery trinkets for the unsuspecting tourists. The style of writing is average and simplistic and the story easy to follow as it plods along to its somewhat inevitable conclusion. I was very disappointed in this book having read on recommendation and will not be reading anymore by the author. ( )
  runner56 | Feb 22, 2016 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0973146974, Paperback)

In the space of a single day, twenty year old Trish West purchases her first car, gets accepted into veterinary college, and finds her rock star father, Jim Gamble, a man who vanished into the streets before she was born and now clings to life in a Toronto intensive care unit. Eager to establish a relationship with Mr. Gamble, Trish heads out from her Northern Ontario home that very day to stand at his bedside. But along the way, she crosses paths with a man who will upend her life and the lives of everyone she cares about. Meet Bobcat, a savage serial killer christened The Dentist by the press, a deranged trophy hunter who sees Trish as the ultimate prize. Last Call is a story of lost innocence, sociopathic obsession and moral redemption that is certain to haunt you long after you’ve read the last page.

(retrieved from Amazon Sat, 20 Feb 2016 08:12:07 -0500)

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