Welcome to Literary R&R's stop on Mark Murphy's The Shadow Man blog tour, hosted by Tribute Books.
A physician currently living in Savannah, Georgia, Mark Murphy is also a lifelong award-winning writer. In the midst of a busy medical career which included several academic publications, Dr. Murphy's decision to attend the Iowa Summer Writing Festival led to the inclusion of a short story, "The Funeral," in a 2004 collection of works entitled O! Georgia! A well-received regular newspaper column in the Savannah Morning News followed. The Shadow Man is his first novel.
ISBN #: 978-1938296031
Page Count: 331
Copyright: July 20, 2012
Publisher: Langdon Street Press
(Taken from back cover)
Savannah surgeon Malcolm King had a perfect life - a loving wife, devoted daughter, and a thriving medical practice.
And then it all ended.
A chance encounter with a reckless driver in an airport parking lot leads to his first brush with the law. The senseless slaughter of a neighbor's pet soon follows, with Malcolm inexplicably questioned in the matter by the police. An adversary is found decapitated. An acquaintance is chopped into pieces and stuffed into a garbage bag, Malcolm soon finds himself the prime suspect in a serial murder case. But he's not a killer. Or is he?
Who is the Thin Man who lurks at the edges of his vision?
Are the flocks of ravens that crowd overhead a warning of impending doom? Or do they exist at all?
And how can he protect his family from something - or someone - he knows absolutely nothing about?
As Malcolm fights to discover the truth, he learnes from a mysterious Seminole tracker that he may not be the first victim of a chameleon-like serial killer known as The Shadow Man. Malcolm's quest for justice takes him perilously close to the edge of sanity - and perhaps a little bit over it.
I love the black and white cover, the juxtaposition of the light and dark. It gives an aura or mystery and suspense to the novel.
A surgeon, Malcolm, is happy and satisfied with his life. His professional career is thriving, his family is gorgeous and beautiful and content, and he is a well-respected member of the community. That all changes with the demented plans of a deranged killer.
Malcolm is convinced he is being set up for murder. The local police, whom happens to employ his best friend, is convinced that Malcolm, himself, is the killer as all the evidence they have points to that fact. In order to prove his innocence, Malcolm runs and hides with the help of a complete stranger, who has more in common with Malcolm than he realizes.
Is the stranger really there to help Malcolm or to hinder him? Is this helpful stranger the one doing the killing? If not, then who is and why are they framing Malcolm?
Malcolm - A well-respected surgeon who lives in Savannah with his wife and daughter. His parents are deceased. He has a loyal, aging dog. He seems to be a little arrogant at the beginning, but who wouldn't being in his position? As a father, he seems to come across as trying just a little too hard to be funny. There were parts that didn't seem genuine to me.
Amy - Malcolm's wife and a nurse. She can be a strong support for Malcolm, but tends to be a little too emotional at times.
Mimi - Malcolm and Amy's daughter. She's a little spoiled, but she's smart and trusts her instincts.
The Shadow Man - Was a little bit of a surprise ... To be as smart as he was, I was disappointed to see him open up the way he did. Perhaps that was the emotion of the situation getting to him. Perhaps he was truly tired of killing people, but I don't think so.
This was an extremely well-thought out novel. The twists and turns were above par for a debut author. I think some of the characters could've used just a little tweaking, but the concept and direction were solid.
*A paperback copy of this novel was provided by the tour host in exchange for an honest review for the purposes of this blog tour.