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To Wake The Dead
Richard Laymon
Leisure hardcover $24.00

review by Michael McCarty

This first edition hardcover horror novel is about a 4,000-year-old mummy wandering around modern-day California.
   Yes, you read it correctly - Mummy. There haven't been that many Mummy tales to hit the book shelves lately - mostly the silver screen with the Universal franchise of fear, The Mummy, The Mummy Returns, and The Scorpion King. But the bookshelves have been barren on the subject until now. Both Laymon and Joe R. Lansdale (who also released his Bubba Ho-Tep) have produced novels offering a different approach to the Mummy theme.
   In To Wake The Dead, Amara, once the princess of Egypt, is stripped of her wrapping while collecting dust in the mansion of the rich and elderly Robert Callahan, until a foiled burglary attempts frees the ancient and naked corpse, and then all hell breaks loose.
   This novel is free flowing, and takes unexpected twists and turns. Laymon manages to convey many different storylines; the romance between a police officer and an assistant curator of a museum, teenagers held in cages by a sex-crazed maniac, a crazy street person who has an obsessive crush, three runaway teens from South Carolina escaping from a horrible past, a blind lady lonely for love, and the 38-paged 'Memoirs of Robert Callahan' sewn together like Frankenstein's monster - all so perfect and seamless.
   Amara the Mummy is a highly original monster. Robbed of wrapping and a baby - you actually feel sorry for the creature. And she does some unusual stuff that hasn't been done in Mummy movies or books. To Wake The Dead is a wild ride, a perfect mix of helter-skelter horror and humour. It's another macabre masterpiece by Richard Laymon. There is also an introduction by Dean Koontz in this book as well.
To Wake The Dead

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