Results of the Bram Stoker Award in the year 1990.
Robert McCammon asks, “What happened to those children of the sixties who learned the language of hatred, who swore oaths upon their bloodstained manifestos and vowed to never surrender?” Most went on to other lifestyles. But Mary Terrell, a.k.a. “Mary Terror,” did not change. Her insanity deepened into schizophrenia, and in the late ‘80s she still calls herself “freedom fighter for those without rights in the Mindfuck State.” Hallucinating, heavily armed, and possessed by the delusion that an infant son will restore the good ol’ days with her ex-lover, Mary…
The Funland Amusement Park provides more fear than fun these days. A vicious pack known as the Trolls are preying on anyone foolish enough to be alone at night. Folks in the area blame them for the recent mysterious disappearances, and a gang of local teenagers has decided to fight back. But nothing is ever what it seems in an amusement park. Behind the garish paint and bright lights waits a horror far worse than anything found in the freak show. Step right up. The terror is about to begin!
The story centers around a renovated theater in Pennsylvania and is arranged in three acts, plus overture and curtain call. The tension in Act I heightens as the reader must decide if this is a murder mystery, psychodrama, horror or fantasy, with the author offering clues to support each possibility. Theaters have a history of ghosts and accidents, but as the number of deaths at the Venetian mounts, the police become less inclined to accept verdicts of “accident.” Owner/actor Dennis Hamilton has nothing obvious to gain from the killings, nor could he have caused them, but his strange behavior makes others wonder if he might not have a double or another personality—or something else entirely—that does want the deaths. Mystery, suspense, drama and horror combine to make this one of Williamson’s finest works.
Hap and Leonard are two friends who are always looking for a fast buck. So when Hap’s old flame, Trudy, waltzes back into town with a money-making scam, it sounds easy—a quick dive into the icy Sabine River for a half-million dollars in lost hold-up money. But things go bad, and when Hap and Leonard meet Soldier, they know they’ve entered a nightmare with no escape.