Miriam Black is trying to live an ordinary life, keeping her ability to see how someone dies hidden...until a serial killer crosses her path. This is the second book in the Miriam Black series.
“Visceral and often brutal, this tale vibrates with emotional rawness that helps to paint a bleak, unrelenting picture of life on the edge.” —Publishers Weekly
Miriam is trying. Really, she is. But this whole “settling down thing” just isn’t working out.
She lives on Long Beach Island all year in a run-down, double-wide trailer. She works at a grocery store as a checkout girl. And her relationship with Louis—who’s on the road half the time in his truck—is subject to the mood swings Miriam brings to everything she does. It just isn’t going well.
Still, she’s keeping her psychic ability—to see when and how someone is going to die just by touching them—in check. But even that feels wrong somehow. Like she’s keeping a tornado stopped up in a tiny bottle. Then comes the one bad day that turns it all on her ear.
Wendig sends his potty-mouthed dysfunctional psychic heroine, Miriam Black, out on her scathing second adventure (after 2012's Blackbirds), equipped with the eerie ability to see the death of anyone she touches, except her long-suffering lover, Louis. In a grungy corner of New Jersey, this unlikely pair, "cautious guardian" Louis and "frazzled lunatic" Miriam, plunge into a grisly school for bad girls that conceals a horrifying scheme of kidnapping, torture, and murder. Wendig takes mythic bits from Egyptian, Greek, and Norse avian legends, pads his creepy narrative with allusions to T.S. Eliot's Waste Land, and loses no opportunity to attribute Miriam's unusual insights and abilities to her adolescent angst, brought on by her religious-zealot mother and a wallop to the head with a red snow shovel wielded by the mother of the boy who got teenage Miriam pregnant. Not for the squeamish, this attempted exploration of primal fears loses much of its intended impact through injudicious overkill.