Saturday, November 20, 2010

Disciple of the Dog-R.Scott Baker

Disciple of the Dog
R.Scott Baker
Forge, Nov 23 2010, $24.99
ISBN: 9780765321909

Newark, New Jersey private investigator Disciple Manning has the uncanny ability to remember everything he hears or sees exactly like an instant replay. When he says he seen it all or heard it all, he can play back the tape in his head.

Worried about their twenty-one years old daughter, Jonathan and Amanda Bonjour hire Manning to find the missing Jennifer, who joined the New Age cult Framers founded by former Berkley university Professor Xenophon Baars. Amanda left the nursing school she attended and presumably resides within the Framers’ “Compound”; that is if she still lives, which Manning doubts. Manning drives to the converted Pennsylvania farm Compound to learn the fate of Amanda. Instead he finds out that Baars believes the world is coming to an end shortly. His obsessed followers blindly do what he tells them to do in preparation for the end of days.

Readers will either love or hate Disciple who is a sort of younger and gross version of The Old Man (played by Victor Wong) in the Golden Child. Thus, he is definitely different as a hero and not just because he has the uncanny total recall skill; farting and nose picking in public is part of his repertoire as a cynic who not only sees and hears it all he remembers it all. The fate of Amanda is engaging and twisting, and Baars fascinating in a Reverend Jim Jones of Guyana way. However, this plot is owned by the king of gas who can smell up a paragraph with one release.

Harriet Klausner

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