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Borderland

4 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Kirkus Reviews

This latest Kansas gothic from hard-working Epperson (Brother Lowdown, Dumford Blood) features a truly monstrous town--Denke, Kansas--whose main industries are kidnaping and theft and whose leading amusements are rape, murder, and cannibalism. Vic Kimmler, fired from the Kansas City police force for stealing confiscated cocaine to cover debts from his late wife's cancer operations, arrives in Denke with his two daughters and his rough- edged firefighter best friend, Nolan Wulf, to claim a broken-down farm that Vic's father left him. But their dreams of an idyllic retreat from big-city blues are shattered when they learn that (1) the townspeople have mounted a vendetta against the farm's tenants, Myra Callahan and her genius son Cal, disabling their car, cutting off their phone, and dragging their slaughtered livestock through their trailer; (2) Cal's dead father's rich parents are determined to get him away from Myra, by force if necessary; (3) the house seems to be haunted by a lank-haired spirit named Drusilla, who's visible only to Myra and Vic's girls; and (4) the town's economy has depended for generations on the citizens' monthly trips to outlying cities to rob, rape, kill, and consume their victims--a project now spearheaded by swaggering Gil Schwarz, pederast patriarch Jinx Lahr, and ineffectual police chief Ed Kisner, whom the Denkeans plan to recruit Vic to replace. The variety and sheer number of threats to her unlikely heroes take Epperson way over the top; the second half of this witches' brew reads like the most exhaustive catalogue of atrocities since the glory days of the Marquis de Sade. -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

S.K. Epperson is the author of nine novels, and two screenplays.
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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Iuniverse Inc (April 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0595002072
  • ISBN-13: 978-0595002078
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #14,421,163 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Ever resistant to type, S.K. Epperson's fiction includes experiments with voice, style and the blending of genre.

Author of numerous novels, novellas and a collection of short stories, The Vision and Other Tales. Brother Lowdown, published by St.Martin's, was nominated by HWA for Best First Novel. Other works include Borderland, The Moons of Summer, Nightmare and The Neighborhood. Novellas include The Rift, Ghost of the Rock, Dogstar Bender, Betsy Klausmeyer's Cellar, The Bear, The Crypt Thieves, Curse of the Alastor and more.

Pseudonyms include S.J. Strayhorn (Black Night, published by Kensington) and Dylan Harson (Kansas Blue published by Dutton)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Every town has its secrets, and Denke is no exception. Denke has its own laws, its own traditions, the same families for a hundred years. They live on the blood of their human prey and they will do anything to keep this a secret from the outside world.This book is taught with suspense and chills. A good beach book.
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Format: Hardcover
Borderland is the kind of novel Stephen King would write if he were given a strict word count limit to come up with a good-guys-vs-evil-small-town story. Sure enough, Epperson's story starts off at an even pace and the characters are developed quickly -- but well enough -- to make you care for them (or hate them based on which side they represent). Though the supernatural element remains largely in the background, it is selectively weaved in with the narrative of growing unease and physical harm that our main characters face in the town of Denke.

The old guard wants to retain its old (evil) ways of life -- which includes cannibalism -- while the unsuspecting "outsiders" are trying to make sense of the sly external appearances of normalcy and depraved, predatory instincts that masquerade as long standing town tradition. It's interesting that at the centerpiece of this self-righteous butchery is a frail-looking old man who you'd otherwise consider harmless. For the townsfolk, killing and other vile acts are like a religion to be followed without question or hesitation, lest they themselves become the hunted. This remorseless way of life was also meant to be passed down the generations, ideally to a male progeny who would then be tasked with continuing this brutal legacy.

Epperson's story goes into areas that King's novels seldom do, which is why I was reminded of the works of Bentley Little, another horror maestro from the time. In a way, you might say that if you combine King with Little, you'd get an SK Epperson novel.

Written way back in 1992, you might have a passing thought or two (at least I did) that this novel wouldn't have got the attention it deserved when it was first released because King's works were so overwhelmingly popular back them.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Although this book starts off alittle slow, it quickly draws the reader in. You begin to care about the charachters, even the ones you dont like, and by the end of the book, your left begging for a sequal.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
this is a fun filled 'spook' story really fitting for the season. i found it entertaining and compelling.
the style is unique and leads you through the story..this is 'horror' fiction so for some it may not
be as interesting as others...but i liked it and think others might, too.
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By E. Sankey on January 22, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I was suprised that I actually enjoyed this book. I hadn't planned on reading it,but breezed right through in almost no time. I'd actually recommend this one.
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