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Tales of the Shadowmen
by edited by J.M and Randy Lofficier

Category: Fiction / Mystery
253 pages; ISBN: 1-932983-36-8

Rating: 10/10  (Ratings explained)
Reviewer: Kevin Tipple


Imagine, if you will, the heroes and villains from French pulp fiction brought back to life for another tale. In some cases, it is merely a possible follow-up story to the original work. In other cases, friends and foes unite to do battle once again. The result is this anthology featuring fourteen rather creepy stories. As co-editor Jean-Marc Lofficier notes in the introduction these “…are the stuff myths are made of.” (Page 10)

A case in point is by Win Scott Eckert entitled “The Vanishing Devil.” If you haven’t had the pleasure of reading the novel “City of Gold & Lepers” featuring Doc Ardan (also from this publisher) then the story will not work nearly as well for you. But, if you have had the pleasure of reading that very good book, this short tale set twenty years in the future will intrigue with the possibilities it suggests.

An adventure showcasing Arsene Lupin (one of several to mention Lupin directly or indirectly) is “The Three Jewish Horsemen” by Viviane Etrivert. Lupin does like his pranks.

Another Lupin story and equally good is “The Sainte-Genevieve Caper” by Alain le Bussy. Others beside the famous Sherlock Holmes are at work chasing Lupin and Monsieur Ganimard fully intends to be the first to catch him.

This enjoyable anthology also features stories by Matthew Baugh, Bill Cunningham, Terrence Dicks, G. L. Gick, Rick Lai, Samuel T. Payne, John Peel, Chris Roberson, Robert Sheckley, Brian Stableford, and of course, the editors Jean-Marc and Randy Lofficier. Many of the contributors are well known for their work elsewhere, some are not, but all share an affinity for French pulp fiction and a talent to bring their chosen characters alive for the reader. The result is an enjoyable read from start to finish and further proof that good stuff comes from the halls of Black Coat Press.

Book Facts:

Tales Of The Shadowmen—Volume One: The Modern Babylon
Edited by J. M. and Randy Lofficier
Black Coat Press
ISBN # 1-932983-36-8
Large Trade Paperback
253 Pages
$22.95 US

Kevin R. Tipple © 2005



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