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Ghoul (Special X #2)

3.92 of 5 stars 3.92  ·  rating details  ·  778 ratings  ·  40 reviews
Dressed in a cape and top hat, with a bone white face and madman's eyes, the Ghoul crawls from the London sewers to kill - bloodily, perversely, inexplicably.

In Vancouver, the horror rock group Ghoul cavort onstage, their act a bizarre and violent front. But, for what? Drugs? Snuff films? Dirty money? Contract killings?

Inspector Zinc Chandler of Special X thinks he knows.

Paperback, 400 pages
Published May 2nd 1989 by Signet (first published January 1st 1987)
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What's my favorite horror novel of all time? Tough question, but the one novel that always first comes to mind is the sophomore effort, Ghoul, by the amalgamation of Canadian lawyers known as Michael Slade.

Don't be fooled by the tittle. This is not a book about monsters or the paranormal. Ghoul is a psycho-thriller featuring the hunt for a deranged psychopath by detective Zinc Chandler, a member of the elite Canadian serial killer task-force known as Special X. That's right, it's about Mounties.
Nov 04, 2008 James rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to James by: Rue Morgue Magazine
i have to admit to being rather conflicted on the rating of this book, which i desperately wish i could have given a 3.5 if able, but in the end, there was just too much that i found appealing to give it a flat 3.

my biggest complaints seem rather few when i think about them list-wise, but it's a strong list. there were, for a large portion of the book, too many story lines going on at one time, and by the time they were all pulled together, it wasn't so much an "a-ha" moment as an "oh, jeez" mo
Jeff Gamble
quite possibly one of the best written horror novels ever.never before or since have i found myself reading a book one minute and then standing on the otherside on the room staring at the book wondering what the f*** is goin on.its worth the verbal acid trip to find out.
A police procedural/horror story, that's the warped mind of Michael Slade. The second in the "Special X" series, and after "Headhunter", it's hard to believe this is a father and daughter writing team!
This is a perverted, gory, blood fest. And a damn fine thriller.
Meghan Schulz
Slade is my favorite author. Great character development and the fact that his books take place in and around Vancouver makes them that much more scary. A must read for those who like psycho thrillers
Nan Silvernail
In the London sewers a madman schemes to bring back Lovecraft's Old Ones while a sadistic killer's victims float down to the Thames. A Vampire stalks young girls and drains their blood. A homophobic bomber strikes and then sends Victorian flower poseys. Meantime, in Canada the Death Rock group, Ghoul wails on the stage. Predators stalk their victim in a prison's shower. A sexually obsessed heiress makes her last call to an escort service and a nice woman shudders at threatening letters and calls ...more
What an amazing book! Though I know that the depiction of a multiple personality in this novel is not actually the way such things work, it was easy enough to suspend disbelief, because of the completely captivating story and the concise prose style of the three people who write as Michael Slade. I found this thing in a used bookstore not too long after it came out (lucky me), and noticed a blurb on the back that said it had Cthulhu Mythos content. That was good enough for me to shell out the fe ...more
Whoa this book is off the hook...a powerful bloody book with intersecting stories of a demented and violent serial killer, two sets of cops searching for him and glimpses into the lives of other characters..This book has everything sick and twisted you could want in a book: gory, violent detailed murder, psychosis at its best and hints of romance..but it also throws in incest, homosexuality, AIDS, death, rock and roll and of course HORROR...Scary book that was well written and interesting..The g ...more
Wow....What a concept for a killer(s). Had me on the edge of my seat all the time while reading it. Is one of the best books ever written. Have read it three times already, and I am sure I will visit again.
Alice Cooper blurbed this novel, weird no?
Apr 07, 2012 Rachel rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Not even my worst enemy
Shelves: horror
One of the worst books I have ever read. Seriously. I found this on a book of "Best Horror Books" and I have to say that, while horror is not my favorite genre, there are many better books out there. Michael Slade is actually 3 separate people, which might explain why the book is so bad. One author wants to include every boring piece of research and slow down the plot. One wants to add sex and bad language to every scene, and one wants to include every stupid plot twist possible.
This novel is a guilty pleasure if there ever was one. It's trashy, horrific, twisted, and sadistic. But it's a gripping page-turner, and as far as mass market horror novels go, it's actually pretty good. If the members of Motley Crue sat down to write a sequel to The Silence of the Lambs, the result would be something like this book. I have given it 5 stars because and only because it's a masterpiece of irresistible garbage.
I really like these books, there are a ton in this series, written as a collaboration of lawyers who are experts in forenzics and psychoanalysis of criminals. it's a mystery-thriller with only a touch of ick, but the whole book comes together at break neck speed at the end, and will NOT dissapoint you. It has an educational touch to it, as they have done their homework. its a wonderful rainy day book. or series of books.
This book was dedicated to HP Lovecraft, Alice Cooper, Stephen King with good reason. Homage to Cthulhu is paid and there is so much blood, guts and gore with a wonderfully twisting, twistED, storyline, that it is now my all-time fave horror novel! As another reviewer (in another forum) said; "A splatter-punk's wet dream!!"
Janus Andersen
Mislykket blanding af psykohorror og krimi. Ikke særligt spændende, ikke skræmmende og ikke tåbelig nok til at være sjov. Meget fanget i sin tid - med mindre man synes, at Mötley Crüe er helt vildt satanisk og ondt og fyldt med bøh. Faktisk ikke helt sikker på, hvorfor jeg læste den her færdigt.
Gruesome, serious crime fiction at its best. Michael Slade kept me up hour after hour turning pages like crazy... I literally could not put this down. Be warned though, it is graphic, raw and in your face like only Michael can do.
It's been ages and ages since I've read this, but I remember this being as good of a "serial killer book" as I've ever read. And I have read Silence of the Lambs.

If you can find this, hunt it down.
Jaime Contreras
This book scared the beans out of me. The tale of a mindless killer and a brilliant police officer with his own demons delivers the goods. I reread last summer and still has that gut-wrenching impact.
Apr 09, 2010 T.L. rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: horror
Read this years ago when first released to paperback and I loved it. Turns out Michael Slade is the pen name of a Canadian father/daughter writing team. What a twisted imagination these two have. I approve!
If you're familiar with Slade's work, you know what to expect. I didn't find it near as shocking as Headhunter, so I was kind of disappointed.
A lot of people liked this one, though.
Brian Sammons
My second favorite Slade book, after Headhunter, even if “he” gets a lot of things wrong about Lovecraft. Regardless, a top rate gory, sexy, thrilling murder mystery if there ever was one.
Ian Christie
I've lost my copy. Bloody good read. I remember being hooked on it while blasting Alice Cooper in my speakers. Can't wait for the ebook for my kindle and read it all over again.
Craig Fitzpatrick
Well worth reading. This and headhunter are 2 of the best horror/crime books I've had the pleasure of reading. If that's not enough Bruce Dickenson of Iron Maiden recommends it :)
Josh Dormammu
Feels like it was written by 3 people. Which it was.
Leila Elkington-Brasz
Creepy full of researched details that add fantastic depth and strength to the story. Excellent Canadian pyscho horror.
This book is the only reason I pause before immediately seeking out a recommendation from Tripper
Adam Bruderer
I'm not a big fan of horror but this is my all time favourite. Haven't read it for years though.
That was some messed up shit. I had to keep putting it down and walking away. Loved it. 5 stars.
Would rate this 3.5 stars. It has so many twists and turns. The ending almost got me.
Hard to get into. Things don't come together until the very end. Tempted to give it up.
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Why no movies made of Michael Slade's brilliant books? 3 9 Jul 22, 2013 10:12PM  
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Criminal lawyer MICHAEL SLADE has acted in over one hundred murder cases. His specialty is the law of insanity. He argued the last death penalty case in Canada’s highest court. Backed by his forensic experience, Slade’s Special X and Wyatt Rook thrillers fuse the genres of police and legal proce
More about Michael Slade...
Headhunter  (Special X, #1) Ripper  (Special X, #4) Hangman  (Special X, #8) Cutthroat  (Special X, #3) Burnt Bones  (Special X, #7)

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