Now this is a title I definitely remember seeing on the Woolworth's checkout racks when I was a kid, and even though I was a monster-movie fan it still freaked me out. I don't know who Russell Rhodes is, nor if Tricycle is any good because I doubt I'll ever read it, but I just had to share it. Even at that young age the cover art still disturbed me, not because of its ridiculousness - I doubt I had that sensibility as a pre-teen - but because it seemed so dead serious. This conflation of evil and innocence is an essential go-to for horror. How else do you get housewife and teenage girl shoppers to pick up your book?
Now this UK version here doesn't have that same je ne sais quois. Actually, that's not true; I know exactly what's wrong with it: it doesn't have the skull-faced kid staring you down and coming at you all implacably unstoppable and all. What did that poster for the movie of No Country for Old Men say? You can't stop what's coming. You can't reason with eyeless sockets, and you certainly can't appeal to any kid's better nature, not even a dead kid's. Especially not a dead kid, I mean, they're the absolute worst. And you know I'm right.
Edmund Crispin’s The Long Divorce
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