The Straw Men

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The Straw Men is a 2002 crime novel by the British writer Michael Marshall.

Marshall has previously published some well-received SF titles under the name Michael Marshall Smith, but following in the footsteps of Iain Banks and Brian Aldiss, Marshall has decided to swap names to denote a switch in genre.

Plot[edit]

The Straw Men is a book about serial killers. It opens with a scene set in a small American town, where a duo of gunmen open fire in a busy McDonalds fastfood franchise.

The remainder of the book jumps between two storylines. The first is a first person narrative piece telling us about Ward Hopkins, a young man going home to bury his parents after they suffered a car accident. He encounters a video tape in the family home that suggests that maybe they are still alive. Investigations are pursued with and things quickly spiral as they typically tend to do. A friend who happens to be a CIA operative is enlisted to provide someone to crack wise with.

The second strand is in conventional third person and concerns John Zandt, an ex-homicide detective who is persuaded to come out of early retirement since it appears that the psycho who abducted his daughter has found another victim.

Adaptations[edit]

The book has been adapted into a comic book by Zenescope Entertainment.[1]

Notes[edit]