✶ Black Mountain (Isaiah Coleridge #2) Epub ✹ Author Laird Barron – Dolove.info

When two mutilated bodies of local criminals are found, signs point to a hired killer called The Croatoan But the Croatoan has been dead for years, right That s what Isaiah Coleridge wants to find outLaird Barron jumped nearly to the top of my favorite authors list in 2017 When this popped up on Netgalley, I had to read it.Black Mountain continues the story of Isaiah Coleridge, part Maori former hitman trying to leave the killing behind As Coleridge plays sleuth, his violent nature stares him in the face again and again In this volume, Coleridge tries to find the perpetrator of two murders and winds up with much on his hands.Laird Barron s writing is as great as ever, part Chandler, part Thompson, part Ellroy, and even some Roger Zelazny in the mix, equally adept at poetic descriptions and stark violence I had no idea who the killer was for most of the book I was too busy trying to piece things together along with Isaiah and Lionel.For part of the book, I thought Isaiah was a little too capable and the book meandered a bit Then the rug got yanked out from under me and I wolfed down what was left in one long ass numbing sitting The Croatoan wound up being far interesting than your run of the mill serial killers The book flirted with cosmic horror a bit at times Maybe the Children of Old Leech will be mentioned in the next one While I love his brand of horror, sometimes you just want to see bad guys get got Laird Barron delivers the goods here Four out of five stars. This is the second book in the hard boiled crime series featuring Isaiah Coleridge As I noted in my review of the first book, Blood Simple , Coleridge is a mostly reformed mob enforcer who was working in Alaska until being exiled to upstate New York after a problem involving walruses pissed off the wrong man Isaiah is half Maori and has a fondness for classic literature and dogs I enjoyed the first book and I wasn t at all disappointed by the second Coleridge is now working as a PI, and the Albany mob wants him to investigate the murder of one and possibly two of its independent contractors His search leads him to an infamous, elderly hitman known as the Croatoan, a shady corporation and an heiress burlesque dancer It was interesting to see how hitmen, including Coleridge, are groomed through an informal mentoring program They seem to recognize who has the potential to excel at this craft He investigates with the help of his friend Lionel, who is ex military and also a former mercenary I like the author s writing style The dialogue was sharp I particularly liked the exchanges between Coleridge and Lionel The plot was tight and wasn t resolved by someone being an idiot or suddenly confessing everything The author is also very good at describing characters, scenery and action sequences I will definitely continue reading the series I received a free copy of this book from the publisher. I received a free advance copy from NetGalley for review.A former Mafia hit man turned private detective hunts down a serial killer who also used to moonlight as a mob hit man Man, I really wanted to love this book Sadly, I didn t.Isaiah Coleridge was introduced to us in Blood Standard, and to say that his backstory is complex is an understatement He used to make his home in Alaska where he worked as a top notch killer for the Outfit, but after he had a bloody falling out with one of the bosses Isaiah was exiled to in upstate New York Determined to leave his old ways behind Isaiah has become a private detective, but he also doesn t mind jobs where his skills as an enforcer might come in handy He also has to maintain a delicate relationship with the local mobsters so when one of them comes to him with an ugly job Isaiah is in no position to refuse.Two of the local thugs have been murdered in gruesome ways, and the boss wants to know if they re connected and who might be behind it Isaiah reluctantly begins to check out it out and quickly learns that a legendary hit man long thought retired or dead might be behind it It also turns out that this guy s hobby when not killing people for money was killing people for fun If the mob connections weren t bad enough it also seems like this man might have ties to the military and there s some very rich people in the mix as well Despite his plate being pretty full Isaiah also has taken on a gig trying to protect a local woman from a family of thugs because she s dating the ex of one of them.Sounds like a lot, doesn t it And it is Frankly, it s too much This was my problem with the first book, too There s a great idea in there with the idea of an ex mob hit man trying to kinda go straight but getting tangled up in bloody messes However, everything has to get so complicated that it all gets bogged down as Isaiah just pinballs from one thing to the next The core story of an ex hit man hunting a legendary ex hit man is great, but the bad guy can t just be an insane serial killer too He also has to be wrapped up in a vast conspiracy that is pretty ridiculous so I guess mob killer serial killer just wasn t enough.And that s kind of the problem to all of it Barron has good ideas and is a capable writer, but he just never knows when to stop adding layers to the cake and focus on shaping the elements he already has into something edible Eventually it just collapses on itself from it s own weight For example, the big subplot in this book is dumped to the back burner and is pretty much resolved with a couple of sentences late in the book as action that we don t see So it was just a distraction in an already overstuffed book.There s the core of a really cool character and series here, but it took too much effort for me to dig it out More bloody violence and less plot, please. Laird Barron s BLACK MOUNTAIN is his best novel yet, which is saying something Expertly blending crime and horror, Laird s non supernatural horrors become cosmic existential in scope and feel, similar to Peter Straub s genius novels KOKO, THE THROAT. Ex Mob Enforcer Isaiah Coledrige Has Hung Out A Shingle As A Private Eye In New York S Hudson Valley, And In His Newest Case, A Seemingly Simple Murder Investigation Leads Him To The Most Terrifying Enemy He Has Ever FacedWhen A Small Time Criminal Named Harold Lee Turns Up In The Ashokan Reservoir Sans A Heartbeat, Head, Or Hands The Local Mafia Capo Hires Isaiah Coleridge To Look Into The Matter The Mob Likes Crime, But Only The Crime It Controlsand As It Turns Out, Lee Is The Second Independent Contractor To Meet A Bad End On The Business Side Of A Serrated Knife One Such Death Can Be Overlooked Two Makes A Man WonderA Guy In Harold Lee S Business Would Make His Fair Share Of Enemies, And It Seems A Likely Case Of Pure Revenge But As Coledrige Turns Over Stones, He Finds Himself Dragged Into Something Deeper And Insidious Than He Could Have Imagined, In A Labyrinthine Case Spanning Decades At The Center Are An Heiress Moonlighting As A Cabaret Dancer, A Powerful Corporation With High Placed Connections, And A Serial Killer Who May Have Been Honing His Skills Since The Vietnam War My review of BLACK MOUNTAIN can be found at High Fever Books.Blood Standard, the book that introduced the half M ori mob enforcer Isaiah Coleridge, was one of my favorite books of 2018 Halfway through that one, I found myself lamenting over the wait for book two I wanted it immediately This, of course, means that I had ridiculously high hopes for Black Mountain hopes that Laird Barron not only met entirely, but brilliantly exceeded.Exiled from Alaska to upstate New York, Coleridge is making ends meet as a private investigator As Black Mountain opens, we find him working a cheating spouse case, the aggrieved party of which is an Aryan gang member out to put the hurt on Coleridge s client Right off the bat, Barron delivers a big fight scene that showcases Coleridge s talents for violence, which also has the added bonus of reading about an Aryan scumbag getting beat down in glorious detail Few things are as satisfying as reading about a white supremacist getting his ass handed to him, but there are, of course, complications to follow The Aryan is in league with the mob, and in order to square things and ensure he doesn t get one in the neck, Coleridge is forced to take on a job for a local crime boss One of said boss s goons has recently turned up dead, decapitated, and missing his hands and he s not the first one The killer s signature is one that goes back decades and matches the work of a highly prolific serial murderer known as the Croatoan At its heart, Black Mountain sounds like the start of yet another dime a dozen serial killer thriller, but Barron adds a lot of depth to this scenario, as well a hell of a lot of cosmic creepiness Laird Barron is a name well known in horror circles, thanks to books like The Croning and his collection, The Imago Sequence Other Stories While Blood Standard was straight up PI noir, Black Mountain takes on greater, and subtler, weight with its infusion of some small cosmic horror elements That s not to suggest that Black Mountain is a work of supernatural terror or a Lovecraftian creature feature it s not, although it does have plenty of grim moments that help blur genre lines It is, however, most certainly a grim work of PI noir, much like its predecessor, and Coleridge spends plenty of time reflecting on his place in the universe and the cosmic implications of his existence, as well as those of the Croatoan We get minor nods toward and mentions of H.P Lovecraft and the unknowable, as well as a grand conspiracy that suggests possible conclusions, but the central threats herein are entirely human.Coleridge s cosmic wonderings are a part of what made Black Mountain so rich for me the secrets of the Croatoan were another, but I certainly won t go into detail about that As established in Blood Standard, Colerdige is a smart dude For as street smart and tough as he is, there s plenty of brains to match all that brawn He s also a hunter, primarily of humans, and he knows that in order to track his prey, he has to play certain roles One of the things I dug about his official status as a PI was Coleridge s, and Barron s, affectations toward the noir genre His office isn t a place to hang his hat, but rather, specifically, his homburg Although it s set in the present day, many of the characters converse in old fashioned nods to the 1930s Coleridge, at one point, explains that he s looking into a murder most foul His FBI back channel contact says of some mobsters that he s counting the minutes until they apparate back to their lairs We even get a dazzling femme fatale mixed up in the proceedings Black Mountain is a stunning sopho investigation for Coleridge, and with the set up for this character already established in his debut, both Barron and Isaiah have clearly gotten a comfortable grip on defining their new state of affairs and the territory they now both inhabit It s also very intriguing to see Barron slowly expanding the boundaries of those territories, which leaves me wondering what shape and form future Coleridge novels could take Could this, for instance, grow into a overtly cosmic horror series akin to John Connolly s Charlie Parker books I honestly don t know, but the thought intrigues the hell out of me This is a propulsive, energetic read, one that kept me up late a few nights turning the pages until sleep became impossible to fight I wanted to live in this book for as long as I could, but I also couldn t wait to see what would happen next Black Mountain is simply phenomenal, and an easy contender for one of 2019 s best Note I received an advance readers copy of this title from the publisher. The Best Crime Horror Hybrid I ve Read Possibly EverOver the last decade plus, Laird Barron cut his teeth writing the most visceral, mind bending, linguistically overachieving, philosophizing, universe quaking horror fiction seen in this millennia Tapped by Putnam and invited through the mainstream gate to the wider readership beyond, he crafted a crime novel featuring an unforgettable character mafia assassin turned anti hero detective Isaiah Coleridge in the fantastic novel BLOOD STANDARD.The follow up arrived recently, and it came to my door drenched in blood and stinking of the abyss BLACK MOUNTAIN is a tour de force that represents the great culmination of Barron s seasoned crime weaving, plot thickening chops and his black ironed, horror infused sledgehammer.THIS IS THE BOOK BARRON FANS HAVE WAITED FOR.If you dug Barron s horror show theatrics, you will squirm in giddy relish on your favorite reading chair to see descriptions likeCarved from the primordial rock, the statue glistened, black as creosote from eons of blood splatter It absorbed red fire glow and spat back the tectonic roar of a subterranean river, a demonic Mississippi or or Nile And if you re looking for crackling noir, you ll find lines likeReality crumpled and bloomed like a cigarette burn on a movie screento your taste.What s incredible about this book is that Barron is able to handle the double duty of creating the architecture of a great mystery the kind that is thrown wide like a net then pulled and tightly like a snare around your throat as you turn the pages with one of the scariest books I ve read in years I mean, is this horror Is it crime Is it noir Who cares It s awesome BLACK MOUNTAIN is madly entertaining One of those books you literally put down so that you can slow the pace at which you are burning through it Even so, I read the thing in three sittings, and wished I d had the sequel coming, it s coming to pick up and begin tearing through.While I d recommend starting with BLOOD STANDARD, you can also read BLACK MOUNTAIN as a standalone joint and have no issues that said, read BLOOD STANDARD.Suffice to say this is a 5 star read and I think will be the book that not only satisfies Barron s ever growing swath of horror and crime fans, but the one that will launch him and Coleridge to the next level of mainstream readership I m already excited for the inevitable screen adaption If you kin to gut churning cosmic horror and love a good crime read one complete with femme fatales, mysterious government conspiracies, nasty henchmen and oh yeah a possibly supernatural serial killer this is the book you want in your eyeballs el pronto BLACK MOUNTAIN is my favorite book of the year to date, an honor it will almost certainly retain. This one really wowed me It s even darker, funnier, assured and real than Blood Standard the first installment in Barron s Isaiah Coleridge series, if you didn t know , which I really enjoyed Not only is this the best Laird Barron novel, it s among my favorite things he s written, and I ve read all of it Can t wait for many installments of the continuing adventures of Coleridge. another great Coleridge adventure On surer footing than the excellent first entry, we have time for our hulking hitman to explore the rotting resorts of the Catskills and the forbidding mountains of the title, as he hunts a hunter attuned to the death gods than himself Coleridge is great company on this tour of Cold War killer detritus, and artifacts cherished by those who worship death. Maori mobster turned gumshoe Isaiah Coleridge is back in Laird Barron s sequel to Blood Standard , a gritty, graphic crime thriller that not only introduced the world to a new lovable wise cracking detective but also debuted Barron s foray into the crime mystery genre Barron, known for his horror dark fantasy, follows his first crime thriller with Black Mountain.Just as the mob can t seem to quit Coleridge, the horror genre can t quite quit Barron Black Mountain doesn t fall easily into Stephen King territory, but it comes close There are certainly creepy, bump in the night, inexplicable aspects of the novel that would fit comfortably in any of the weird, fantastical horror stories for which Barron is best known.Coleridge is hired by a local capo to investigate the brutal murders of two mafia assassins, known to be quite skilled in the arts of assassination for hire Reluctantly, Coleridge takes the case He wants out of the mob, but he feels like the mob is keeping its dirty hooks into him for some future endeavor This case doesn t help.It doesn t help, either, that the m.o.s are reminiscent of the work of the Croatoan, a legendary mob killer who is Bogeyman than real The Croatoan is a bedtime story that mob bosses tell their kids Over the course of fifty years, the legendary hitman has racked up a tally of over 200 kills, although most mobsters would say that that is an overly conservative estimate.Add to that the fact that Coleridge s friend in the Justice Department says that the Croatoan is not only a real person but is also being investigated by the FBI for a string of serial killings across the country This guy doesn t just kill for hire, he kills for fun.Somewhere along the line, Coleridge gets the sneaking suspicion that he is in way over his head Government experiments, top secret military sites, multinational corporations involved in bio warfare, and a killer that can seemingly change his face and identity at will and seems to have an incredible, superhuman healing ability.Still, it s all in a day s work for Coleridge And if you gotta go out, you might as well go big Black Mountain cements Coleridge as a new hard boiled hero for the ages, and it proves that Barron is certainly no one trick pony I look forward to the new Coleridge novel soon Black Mountain (Isaiah Coleridge #2)

About the Author: Laird Barron

Laird Barron, an expat Alaskan, is the author of several books, including The Imago Sequence and Other Stories Swift to Chase and Blood Standard Currently, Barron lives in the Rondout Valley of New York State and is at work on tales about the evil that men do.Photo credit belongs to Ardi AlspachAgent Janet Reid of New Leaf Literary Media

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