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Deadly Vision Paperback – January 10, 2008
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Horror fiction's most original voice knows how to spin a tale that makes a reader double check the door locks and windows. It is at once smart and twisted. -- Gregg Olsen, New York Times Bestselling True-Crime Author
Rick R. Reed moves to the head of the graveyard with this bone-chilling story of a reluctant psychic, a pair of maniacal killers, and the slaughter of innocence. Fiendishly good! -- Victor J. Banis, author of Longhorns
About the Author
In their October 2006 issue, Unzipped magazine said about Rick R Reed: "You could call him the Stephen King of gay horror." His most recent published work includes a thriller about a serial killer using a gay hookup website to find his victims called IM (Quest Books, May 2007); a tragic vampire love story set in 1950s Greenwich Village and modern-day Chicago called In the Blood (Quest Books, September 2007); and a paranormal page-turner about a psychic reluctantly caught up in the murders of two teenage girls in her small western Pennsylvania town called Deadly Vision(Quest Books, January 2008). Other published novels include A Face Without a Heart (a modern-day version of Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray), Penance, and Obsessed. His horror short story collection, Twisted: Tales of Obsession and Terror was published in April 2006. Upcoming novels include a sexy thriller called High Risk about a bored housewife who chooses a very handsome--and psychotic--stranger to come on to (Amber Quill Press, February 2008); a reincarnation love story called Orientation (Amber Quill Press, Spring 2008) that crosses boundary and sexual orientation lines; and Dead End Street, a young adult novel about five teenagers who form a Halloween Horror Club that takes place in a house that may or may not be haunted (Amber Quill Press, October 2008). His short fiction has appeared in more than 20 anthologies. He lives in Miami, FL.
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Top customer reviews
In "Deadly Vision," Reed is at the height of his power.
Having taught classes in Psychic Development for years, I was compelled to read this story of a youthful mom who has unbidden metaphysical visions after a close encounter with a tree branch during a storm. I can say from personal experience, the author's descriptions of how these unwanted other wordily visions unspool, as well as his deft words about the confusion and contradictory emotions they unleash, ring true.
In "Deady Vision," Reed's rendering of the suddenly psychic mom, and the handsome, mentally ill young man who worships upon the altar of the Devil himself, are as compelling as storytelling gets. Amazingly, the author even successfully builds compassion and empathy for the misfit young woman who changes her name, as well as her life's course, for her merciless, murdering lover.
Reed's characters: the good, the bad and the innocent dead, draw you completely and quickly into their sordid stories.
Books such as "Deadly Vision" are the reason the term Page Turner was coined.
While the plot was not overly original, Mr. Reed did use one new aspect. Instead of having his main character be psychic from childhood, delving into all the little moments in the past where the kid shows talent, but no one believes, his main character, Cass, receives her psychic powers in the beginning of the novel by getting hit on the head. This gave the novel an even flow without a lot of flashbacks trying to explain aspects of Cass' new `talent.' Instead, the reader was allowed to learn about it along with Cass.
As Mr. Reed is known for penning Gay/Lesbian novels, it was no surprise that Cass was a lesbian. However, any reader can enjoy this novel without worry that Cass' sexual orientation will be offputting. There were no graphic sex scenes, for one thing. For another, Cass could just as easily have been straight as far as the storyline was concerned. This, for me, gave the novel a more realistic feel.
The storyline flowed smoothly with a good pace, until the last quarter. At that point, there seemed to be a lot of `filler' designed to make the novel longer, since it was fairly short, drag out the suspense, or both. I'm thinking it was a little of both reasons. I don't mind a little added suspense, but, at times, the buildup was rather cheap. There is a scene (not right at the end) where someone has to tell Cass something, and, instead of coming out and saying it, the person says something else, implying that Cass' son was dead. I would think that if you had a desperate mother looking for her son, you would immediately tell her that what you had to say had nothing to do with her child.
The `psychic' portion of the story was handled wonderfully. I didn't feel that there was any "cheating." I also enjoyed the ending.
Character Development: 4 3/4 Stars
Cass was a sympathetic character, easily understood by any woman, especially a mother. From the opening "Prologue", I am hoping that there might be a sequel featuring Cass solving other murders, kidnappings, etc.
The reporter was also a terrific character. I wouldn't be upset to see them together in a sequel.
The police were pretty realistic in the beginning, reacting as I would have expected when confronted with a woman claiming to have visions. However, I did feel that the female officer's character could have grown a little more once she was shown proof.
Writing Style: 5 Stars
The sentence structure was excellent. There was just enough complexity for good literature, but not so much as to ruin the flow of a good thriller. The dialogue was realistic, with the exception mentioned above. The descriptions were terrific, concise and vivid.
Editing/Formatting: 4 3/4 Stars
There were a couple of instances of missing words. There was also one incorrect pronoun, calling a 'she', `he'. Otherwise, the editing was very good.
The formatting was of professional quality.
Rating: PG-14 for Violence and Child Molestation
Unfortunately, there were a few glaring issues that stopped me from LOVING the book. I'll preface by saying: I judge a book by how well it keeps me in the story and removes me from my everyday stresses and reality. Deadly Vision had two main gripes that ruined the flow for me and reminded me that I was just reading a book, and it sort of took away from that 'immersive experience' that I rely on.
#1 A character can only "bite their lip until they tasted blood" so many times before the repetition is played out.
#2 I don't know if the paperback version is better than the Kindle translation, but there were a few syntactic errors that killed it for me (no pun intended). An error or two over the course of 300+ pages is one thing, but more than five is unacceptable. It would only take a proof-reader one read through to pick up some obvious issues (example: one of the character's last names changed suddenly, but only in one page of the book).
Those two issues aside, the story was great. The ending was a bit anti-climactic and rushed for my taste, but I still really enjoyed the book. The character development was solid, and that's an important part of any story.