Mr Slaughter – Robert McCammon
Mr Slaughter marks the third entry into the historical fiction series featuring Matthew Corbett and the fourth book Robert McCammon has written since his return from retirement.
Matthew Corbett is a problem solver and in the last book “Queen of Bedlam” established an agency with Hudson Greathouse, a sort of enforced mentor to young Matthew at least in the art of combat.
As the title suggests the books focuses on Mr Slaughter - A notorious killer who Matthew and Hudson are hired to escort from the asylum back to London where he is due to be hanged. As you can probably imagine, the job goes far from smoothly.
The character of Tyrannus Slaughter is everything I hoped he would be from the moment we first meet him. A man who on the outside appears to be quite the gentleman but oozes danger with every calculated breath he takes. Despite their experience and reluctance to talk to the criminal, Tyrannus Slaughter soon gets into the minds of both Matthew and Hudson, expertly playing them off each other.
Mr Slaughter, is an expert portrayal in the game of Cat and Mouse. Robert McCammon weaves so many facets into the story and takes Matthew on about a hundred different tangents whilst still keeping the plot fresh and interesting. Personally, I couldn’t get enough of the Tyrannus Slaughter, he consumed me every time he appeared on the page. Robert managed to make him both latently lethal whilst also being quite humorous in places. The “women” line is quite exquisite.
The Colonial era is once again superbly portrayed whilst still being accessible. The supporting cast is fantastic, whether the characters are in the story for seconds or throughout. If there is a criticism it is minor and that is Hudson Greathouse depicted as so cynical and cautious in the “Queen of Bedlam” makes some odd decisions in this book. However, with a great invention like Ty Slaughter manipulating your mind, this can be excused.
As with all Robert McCammon books the end is satisfying and even leaves on a bit of a cliff-hanger. All in all a fantastic entry into the series by an author that has not let me down yet. Overall rating: 9.4