(Review) BONE WHITE by Ronald Malfi

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“Like it was something real. Something out there in the woods with claws.”

Every time I sit down with a Ronald Malfi book, I’m reminded of why I want to be a writer. He reminds me of the power in the art. How words can come together to evoke visions and stir feelings, how characters can become flesh and blood on the page, and how a story can work its way into your bones. We expect that as readers, but as a writer, when we see it done so well, it ignites within us the reason we’re doing this in the first place.

“Snowflakes, like little filaments of pillow stuffing, floated about the atmosphere without ever touching the ground.”

Malfi is the master of description, often giving us subtle lines that flow so effortlessly we ride their waves between actions and dialog, thoughts and observations, trusting he’ll bring us to shore. And when our feet touch sand, the story is there, impossible to ignore, forget, or escape.  In his latest effort, BONE WHITE, Malfi brings his entire bag of tricks and treats, delivering the kind of novel we (his fans) have come to expect.

“Despite the  shroudlike fog that blocked out the sun, the thing’s shadow stretched like black taffy along the pavement behind it.”

The story of twin brothers, Paul and Danny Gallo, and a small, mysterious Alaskan town (Dread’s Hand), BONE WHITE unfurls at a perfect pace, digging its claws in and never letting you go. Things get off to a bang when resident, Joe Mallory, reappears at the local diner after months away, and confesses to a slew of murders. Detective Jill Ryerson arrives on the scene, doubting the seriousness of Mallory’s claims, but finds out the man speaks the truth. Paul Gallo flies to Alaska (via Maryland) to see if his brother, Danny, is among the victims. From there, Paul finds himself in the Dread’s Hand, an unwanted stranger, asking too many questions and fumbling around in corner’s the town wants to keep dark.

BONE WHITE might be my pick for Novel of the Year, it’s that freaking good. My favorite Malfi book since his tremendous FLOATING STAIRCASE, BONE WHITE needs to be on your To Be Read list, whether you’re a horror fan or not.

I give BONE WHITE 5 stars!

Grab yours here: BONE WHITE

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