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Clown in the Moonlight [Kindle Edition]

Tom Piccirilli
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $2.99

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Book Description

CLOWN IN THE MOONLIGHT is based in part on the true story of Ricky Kasso, the so-called Acid King, who murdered a friend in the Northport woods back in '84 claiming Satan told him to do it, then proceeded to bring high school classmates to view the mutilated body for days afterward. Occult, hardboiled, and noir matters enter the mix as a nameless drifter teaches Ricky and friends what the true nature of hell is really all about. Extras include the first chapter of Tom's forthcoming Bantam hardcover THE LAST KIND WORDS (due out June 5), the first chapter of his digital-only dark fantasy novel NIGHTJACK, and the short horror story "Shadder."

UPCOMING NOVEL: "THE LAST KIND WORDS"

From International Thriller Writers Award winner and Edgar Award nominee Tom Piccirilli comes a mesmerizing suspense novel that explores the bonds of family and the ways they're stretched by guilt, grief, and the chance for redemption.

Raised in a clan of small-time thieves and grifters, Terrier Rand decided to cut free from them and go straight after his older brother, Collie, went on a senseless killing spree that left an entire family and several others dead. Five years later, and days before his scheduled execution, Collie contacts Terry and asks him to return home. He claims he wasn't responsible for one of the murders--and insists that the real killer is still on the loose.

Uncertain whether his brother is telling the truth, and dogged by his own regrets, Terry is drawn back into the activities of his family: His father, Pinsch, who once made a living as a cat burglar but retired after the heartbreak caused by his two sons. His card sharp uncles, Mal and Grey, who've recently incurred the anger of the local mob. His grandfather, Old Shep, who has Alzheimer's but is still a first-rate pickpocket. His teenage sister, Dale, who's flirting with the lure of the criminal world. And Kimmy, the fiancée he abandoned, who's now raising a child with his former best friend.

As Terrier starts to investigate what really happened on the day of Collie's crime spree, will the truth he uncovers about their offenses and secrets tear the Rands apart?

Walking the razor-sharp edge between love and violence, with the atmospheric noir voice that is his trademark, The Last Kind Words demonstrates why Tom Piccirilli has become a must-read author.

“Perfect crime fiction . . . a convincing world, a cast of compelling characters, and above all a great story.”—Lee Child, New York Times bestselling author of 61 Hours

FIND MORE FROM TOM PICCIRILLI, including the novels NIGHTJACK, A LOWER DEEP, A SHORT RIDE TO NOWHERE, and THE NIGHT CLASS, The FELICITY GROVE MYSTERIES, including SORROW'S CROWN and THE DEAD PAST,as well as his collection of short fiction FUTILE EFFORTS & a series of "Noirellas," including Thrust, You'd Better Watch Out, The Nobody and more. Tom Piccirilli joins other best-selling mystery and horror writers at Crossroad Press. Search CROSSROAD PRESS to find titles by Bill Pronzini, William Bayer, Bill Crider, Richard Christian Matheson, John Skipp & Craig Spector, and many, many more!


Product Details

  • File Size: 260 KB
  • Print Length: 125 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Crossroad Press; Crossroad Press First Digital edition (February 11, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0078B6VK2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #614,690 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
(8)
4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fear and Blood Sacrifices on Long Island March 13, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Tom Piccirilli's newest is a nightmare, in a good way.

Piccirilli's horror work has always had a dream-like quality to it. Choir of Ill Children and, more recently, Nightjack are good examples of this, but Clown in the Moonlight is possibly his darkest, most brain-melting yet.

The plot concerns a nameless, mentally-troubled narrator (who may or may not be possessed) and his run-ins with various Satan-worshiping low-lifes. The antagonist, Ricky, is the charismatic leader of a local gang whose evil is so attractive and perverse that we get the feeling that even the protagonist carries some respect for the guy.

What always stands out to me when I pick up Piccrilli (either his horror or crime work), is how distinctive his voice is without his narrators becoming too samey. No matter how warped his situations and characters get, there's always a clear thematic through-line and an abundance of story momentum.

CLOWN is a quick, overwhelmingly exciting read that's supplemented by a wealth of bonus content/ I highly recommend that you pick this up.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A particularly dark novella March 9, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A dark and twisted tale of desire and consequence inspired by actual events, which makes this brief trilogy of interwoven tales even creepier. Ricky Kasso, the so-called Acid King, murdered a "friend" in '84 because Satan told him to do it. This story, seen through the eyes of an unidentified acquaintance of Ricky's, tells that tale, but also shed's light on the story of the protagonist who is dealing with demons of his own. Piccirilli's writing is visceral in his description of what drives the antihero to do the terrible things he does.

Overall I enjoyed the mood, the party scene, particularly, captures the a sense of being lost in a crowded setting. I will warn you, if you are looking for a moral to the story or a definitive end to the tale. Don't expect to find one on the written page. The kindle version of this book is free, from the Lending Library, for Amazon Prime members or for $2.99 and includes a preview of Piccirilli's latest book "The Last Kind Words." Clown in the Moonlight
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fast-paced and Gripping Story February 18, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I must admit that this was the first book by Tom Piccirilli that I've read; he's been one of those authors who I've heard great things about but never got around to reading. This novella was an excellent read and I look forward to reading more of Piccirilli's work. The only complaint (and a miniscule one at that) about the book was the ending; otherwise, a fast-paced and gripping story which will have you eagerly turning the pages.

The background to the novella is inspired by true events, the 1984 murder case of a teenage boy by Ricky Kasso, also known as The Acid King, who was a self-proclaimed Satanist. The novella deals with Ricky Kasso in Part 1, and then the consequent "ghost" of Kasso which follows the protagonist and narrator in Parts 2 and 3.

The nameless protagonist of the story is all the more intriguing because the same dark and violent elements, which his antagonists exhibit, also dwell within him constantly threatening to rise to the surface. The latent occultic aspects of the main character make him the antihero of the story, but he clearly has the potential to be one of the bad guys, obtaining just as much pleasure from sadistic and violent acts.

The first-person, present tense narrative draws the reader deeper into the novella. Piccirilli's straight-forward and fast-paced writing style were also a pleasant surprise; I abhor long, drawn-out narratives which take forever to get going and where the author insists on using twelve dollar words in order to appear fancy. Those elements are fine in some genres, but not in horror or thrillers in my opinion.

The only complaint was the ending, and it's not really a complaint. I usually don't mind if a story ends with no complete resolution, but this story just seemed to hit a brick wall and stop.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't Put it Down March 9, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This was a compelling, fast paced book that held my attention from start to finish. This short novel has a great combination of intrigue and thrills.
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More About the Author

Tom Piccirilli is the author of more than twenty-five novels including A CHOIR OF ILL CHILDREN, SHADOW SEASON, THE COLD SPOT, and THE LAST KIND WORDS. He's a four-time winner of the Stoker Award, two-time winner of the International Thriller Award, and has been nominated for the World Fantasy Award, and twice for the Edgar Award. Marilyn Stasio of The New York Tims Book Review called THE LAST KIND WORDS, "A caustic thriller...the characters have strong voices and bristle with funny quirks." New York Times bestselling thriller writer Lee Child said of Tom's work, "Perfect crime fiction...a convincing world, a cast of compelling characters, and above all a great story" And Publishers Weekly extols, "Piccirilli's mastery of the hard-boiled idiom is pitch perfect, particularly in the repartee between his characters, while the picture he paints of the criminal corruption conjoining the innocent and guilty in a small Long Island community is as persuasive as it is seamy. Readers who like a bleak streak in their crime fiction will enjoy this well-wrought novel." Keir Graff of Booklist wrote, "There's more life in Piccirilli's THE LAST KIND WORDS (and more heartache, action, and deliverance) than any other novel I've read in the past couple of years." And Kirkus states, "Consigning most of the violence to the past allows Piccirilli (The Fever Kill, 2007, etc.) to dial down the gore while imparting a soulful, shivery edge to this tale of an unhappy family that's assuredly unhappy in its own special way."

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