Michael Marshall’s new novel, Killer Move is a lip biting and suspenseful thriller to the end. Bill Moore is a successful yuppie businessman in Sarasota, South Florida who sells luxury condos for a living. In addition to a sweet job that affords him a luxury car and a house in the Keys, he has a beautiful, young wife, Stephanie. Everything seems like a Florida daydream until one day, Bill finds a printed card on his desk with one word on it: “Modified”. From that unsettling point on, strange things begin to happen that mysteriously change the course of Bill’s life. A book arrives from Amazon that he never ordered. A reservation is “secured” at a high end restaurant that he never made. Bill’s wife Stephanie finds half naked pictures of his co-worker on his computer, taken from outside her window. A wealthy client he was “working” for a sales deal goes missing. When his wife also disappears, Bill somehow begins to look like a suspect. Perhaps someone has “modified” Bill Moore’s life like a pawn in a nightmarish chess game, someone who has a grudge against him. Who is doing this and for what ungodly reason? And, what is the purpose of the game?
Moore’s svelte descriptions of the landscape and very human dialogue made me believe the characters in the story and want to know more about where their lives were going (what a good plot should do). His narrative touches just enough on the details to keep the reader intrigued. Many critics have compared Moore’s writing to Stephen King, but the comparison escapes my grasp. There are some fortuitous similarities where both writers have the ability to describe the everyday and then jar the reader with ghastly surprises, but the similarity with King dies there. In any case, I recommend Killer Move as a suspenseful thriller with some high tech plot threads and horror elements in the storyline. I couldn’t put it down, and neither will you, until it’s done. Just watch out for loose cards on your dresser before you go to bed.