"We will travel, you and I, across a tortured land where hope struggles to grow like seed in a drought. In this land, a place with no boundaries, we'll run the freeways and back roads and we'll listen to the song of the wheels and peer into windows at lives that might be our own, if we lived in that land." So Robert McCammon introduces this superb collection of 13 stories, nominated for a 1990 Bram Stoker Award for Best Story Collection. The standouts are "Blue World" (a richly imagined novella about a priest facing temptation); "Nightcrawlers" (a World Fantasy Award-winner about a Vietnam vet in a roadside diner); "Night Calls the Green Falcon" (has-been fictional hero dons his old costume to fight real evil); "Yellowjacket Summer" (fateful stop for gas in backwoods Georgia); and "Pin" (dare you to read that one). All of the stories are excellent.
From Publishers Weekly
Rapid-fire action alternating with intense introspection, plus imagery that conjures visions of movie special effects, make McCammon's ( The Wolf's Hour ) multifaceted collection of new and reprinted tales worthwhile despite some uninspired story lines. In the title novella, Father John Lancaster battles temptations of the flesh and becomes a better priest as he saves the life of a cocaine-snorting porn queen. At the end of the world, described in "Something Passed By," the laws of nature go awry: water becomes combustible, concrete turns to quicksand, people move swiftly toward old age or infancy. A Vietnam veteran's nightmares materialize in "Nightcrawlers," yielding terror and death for his associates. "He'll Come Knocking at Your Door" trivializes the Faustian pact by having the devil arrive for trick-or-treat on Halloween to collect his due. An old-fashioned cliff-hanger concludes each segment of "Night Calls the Green Falcon," in which a retired cinema superhero takes up his cape again to stalk a real-life prostitute's murderer.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.