Nathan Shumate runs the excellent Pulp of the Day website. I’ve been a subscriber to it for years, getting a cover image in my email every day. Not all of them are exactly what purists like myself consider pulps, but hey, I love vintage paperbacks and men’s sweat mags, too, so it’s all good. Very good, in fact.
But in addition to this fine work, Shumate is also a writer, and his new e-book, THE DEMON CROSS, is a top-notch horror/private eye yarn. PI and single mother Rennie Avalon tends to get involved in cases that have a supernatural angle to them, and in this one she’s hired to recover an ancient book that contains dangerous information. (That’s right. It’s a wandering book job.) Naturally things get both complicated and dangerous. How could they be anything but with neo-Nazis and demons involved?
The pace in this one really races right along, which I always like, and Shumate does a good job with the characters as well. Despite all the fantastic goings-on, Rennie Avalon doesn’t come across as some sort of super-heroine but rather more of a realistic character who’s reasonably tough when she needs to be but certainly not perfect. The supporting cast consisting of her daughter and various people who help her with her cases is well-drawn, too.
THE DEMON CROSS reminds me of the pilot episode of a good TV series. Shumate has more Rennie Avalon novels coming, and I plan to read them. Recommended.