Science Fiction and Fantasy Association of New Zealand

From Black Rooms From Black Rooms
by Stephen Woodworth

Supplied for review by Hachette New Zealand

Reviewed By: Kevin G Maclean

The NAACC is a nasty organisation. If you've read the earlier books in this series, you'll know that. And they jealously guard their monopoly on the precious Violets, who can be possessed by (some of) the Dead.

Problem is, there just aren't enough Violets to keep the NAACC happy. So what is a sociopathic control-freak organisation to do under these circumstances?

If you guessed "Make more!", go to the head of the class. Of course, the method they decide on is both unethical and illegal, so they make sure the guy heading up the project is sociopathic even by NAACC standards, and has zero supervision in order to preserve deniability. When the scientist suborned into running the experiments has an attack of conscience and kills both himself and all their test subjects, our "rogue" operative has a problem — a shortage of henchmen, and a dead scientist who won't talk. Now everyone "knows" that the best person to solve any problem is the person who created it. Enter Evan Markham — the Violet Killer from Book One. And Evan, we may remember, has a particular personal interest in our plucky heroine...

Mr Woodworth is back on his game with this one. New and interesting characters fit seamlessly into the complex interwoven plot, and my writer's brain tells me that at least one is coming back for his own book. So my earlier fears that Mr Woodworth would exhaust the potential of his creation too fast are proving groundless — there's a whole heap more interesting stories here, folks. I, for one, do not intend to miss out.

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