The Straw Men
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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.
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.
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