Peter Straub and the Goods

In need of a really good suspenseful piece of fiction, well then  I have the books for you.  Peter Straub stories are indeed suspenseful mysteries, but I should add that a majority are also downright terrifying.  The first Straub book I had read was Koko which was amazing.  What I didn’t know at the time was that Koko was the first of three related novels called the Blue Rose Trilogy; the second in the series titled Mystery and the final named The Throat.  Even though all three novels are intertwined with each other, they can also be read as standalones.  While, each novel is extremely complex and the lines between past and present can sometimes blur the reader, or at least it did me, the stories told are just so captivating and the writing truly unique.  Koko deals with the surviving members of a Vietnam War platoon and the horror that they had faced during that time.  As the veterans reunite years later, they discuss the significance of the word Koko and killings associated with it.  They then agree to track down a member of their former platoon who they believe was the perpetrator of these crimes.  However, in their attempt to uncover the missing member of their unit, the killer is starting his killing spree again.  Straub’s second book Mystery tells the tale of a brilliant up and coming amateur sleuth who just happens to have a famous, eccentric retired detective and mystery writer living next door.  Both embark on a journey to solve two mysteries; one, a recent murder in their own Caribbean island setting and another, a twenty year unsolved murder which took place in a summer resort style area for the rich.  Finally, the third book in the trilogy, The Throat, finds a main character from Koko teaming up with a main character from Straub’s second book Mystery.  The two protagonists find themselves together attempting to solve the true identity of the Blue Rose killer who has struck again after 40 years.  However, the man originally thought to be the Blue Rose killer committed suicide 40 years previous.  Straub is a master storyteller who involves amazing characters in all his stories.  These three novels are a must for anyone wishing to read a mystery that will most definitely entertain and keep you on the edge of your seat (I know, I know, enough with the clichés).  Bottom line: these books are good!  Peace!

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