“You don’t teach a child to become a killer by rote lectures,” Laird Barron writes in his new crime novel, Black Mountain. “To create a predatory machine, you foster an appreciation of the natural world and our minuteness upon its canvass. . . . We are as nothing and that permits us to do anything.”
Like a lyricist, Barron excels at manipulating the tones and cadence of language. Like a Gothic novelist, the mood he creates is often bleak. It should come as no surprise, then, that he wrote both poetry and horror before turning to crime fiction.
To read the full text of my Associated Press review of this fine novel, please click here.