J. Kent Messum
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From award-winning author J. Kent Messum, a serial killer thriller for fans of The Straw Men and The Shining Girls.
LIFE GOES ON
For a lucky few, death is merely an inconvenience. With the help of technology the mind can survive long after a body has been laid to rest. This afterlife, however, is far from paradise . . .
MAKING A LIVING
Rhodes is a 'Husk'. It's an illegal, controversial and highly lucrative job - renting out control of his body and mind to the highest bidder. It's a sure way to gain a better life, but some clients go too far. Sometimes, he wakes up with scars.
MAKING A KILLING
Then the visions start - terrible sights that haunt his waking hours. They could be dreams, or they could be something far worse - they just might be memories . . .
Praise for J. Kent Messum:
'Raw, visceral, powerful ... may just make you question what it is to be human' Nick Cutter
'Pacy and surprising, Husk is a showcase for a wild and frightening imagination' Andrew Pyper
'Disturbing, pulse-pounding and utterly surprising' Megan Abbott, Edgar Award-winning author of Dare Me
'The stakes could be no higher in this crisply written, fast-paced novel that examines the shifting line between right and wrong, good and evil ... Will keep readers turning pages late into the night' Lori Roy, Edgar-Award-winning author of Bent Road and Until She Comes Home
'A powerhouse debut ... A mesmerizing, one-sitting read' Steve Ulfelder, Edgar-Award finalist author of Purgatory Chasm and The Whole Lie
media is so censored, you might not even know about shit hitting the fan at the end of your own street. The conglomerate–political machine would prefer it if everyone didn’t feel the weight of the world’s increasing problems. As I do my stretching exercises, the broadcast reports that the old Ebola virus has resurfaced and is making the rounds in India and Pakistan. An avian flu epidemic ravages Asia, rumoured to have also shown up sporadically on the California coast. Treatment centres are
fewer unnerving thoughts. I still have that weight on me, pressure from an unknown source, but Ryoko eased it somehow. The girl has a habit of sneaking out the back door after an overnight, a habit I’m trying to break. A note was left on the kitchen counter. Said she will miss me while I’m gone and that we need to talk when I get back. It was signed Love Ryoko, something she’s never done before in our history of leaving notes. The thought makes me smile, even as the penthouse door opens to reveal
sores caked with foundation and lipstick. The girl I had been in love with was alien to me, little more than a silhouette before the glowing advertisement. In a nearby store window, flat-screens flickered images of those types I’d misinterpreted: newscasters, weatherpersons, late-night infomercial hosts. I looked at Beth, the one who’d been a dreamer like me, determined to make that easy money for life. That’s when I finally understood. We’re all just slaves to the system. It’s only the people
in.’ We hear the chime sound another two times, loud and impatient. Tweek turns on a flat-screen on the wall and checks the front door’s security camera feed. I see Renard’s stoic face looking into the lens. The two security guards from Winslade’s penthouse flank him, both dressed in civilian garb. Inside Renard’s jacket I see the butt of his Rapier in its holster. ‘Shit,’ I say. ‘That’s Winslade’s attaché.’ Renard presses the button a fourth time, keeping his finger on it. The chime plays
mull it over, feeling the truth, reconsidering my own recent stance on the stars. Javier is far sharper than I originally gave him credit for. Having the guy at my side suddenly feels reassuring. Still, I don’t want him involved in my problems. ‘If you don’t get out of this car, Javier, I can’t guarantee your safety.’ ‘Safety has been an issue for a good while now, my friend. I have a chance to repay my debt, help you out with your little problem. And shit, I got nothing to lose. So, I’ll ask