Madhouse: Cal Leandros Series 3

Monday, June 8, 2009


Teaser: Cal and Niko are back again, but with a new breed of enemies to add to the ever-growing list. Sawney Beane, a formerly deceased cannibalistic serial killer, is on the loose and leaving a trail of bodies behind. The brothers race to stop him from killing anyone else, but find themselves stretched in two directions when someone makes an attempt on Robin's life. All in a day's work for these brothers who never seem to catch a break.

Short Thought: Overall a good addition to the unique series. Slightly better than the two previous books.

Expanded Thoughts: This third installment into the series is more like three short stories in one. So, for the purpose of this review, I'll be discussing them separately.

First, the main plot is the resurrection of the Scottish serial killer, Sawney Beane. He is a gruesome cannibal that doesn't hesitate to leave a trail of gore and horror behind him. I'm not going to comment on this storyline much, because I didn't feel that it was anything terribly unique. It was like a horror version of a Criminal Minds episode. It was great fun, but not terribly different from other stories of its kind.

Second, there is somebody out to kill the ever-randy Robin Goodfellow. Really, how do you narrow down a suspect when the Puck has made millions of enemies of thousands of years. This was actually my favorite plot line in the whole novel. It was clever, and you get to see a different side to Robin--instead of his bare bottom in action, you get to see a vulnerability clouded in fear (and probably still in action). The ending was also brilliant. I truly never guessed who the perp was until it was revealed.

Lastly, Cal goes to any lengths to get laid. I really didn't like this storyline. It was like a badly done Gothic version of American Pie. I felt that it didn't fit in with the flow of the rest of the series. It was almost like the author decided that she didn't like George and needed a way to write her out without killing her. It was a major turning point for Cal, but not a good one in my opinion.

This series keeps steadily getting better. I look forward to reading the next. This was definitely the best one of the series I've read so far, I almost enjoyed reading it too much. With all this dark humor and horror, I think I scared myself with how much I did enjoy it. Perhaps, I should work up a really kick butt maniacal laugh to go with it.

Additional Notes: This is the third novel in the Cal Leandros Series by Rob Thurman.

Additional Notes: This novel contains dark themes, violence, and mild language.

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