THE WAITING ROOM
Hodder & Stoughton Hbk £17.99p
Released: 24th June 2010
Reviewer: Ron Ellis
Ron Ellis is a journalist and author of the Johnny Ace books
In no way can this be
called a crime novel. If it was a film, it would probably come into the
horror category but, as a book, it might be said to be part of the
rapidly growing number of supernatural tomes.
The plot is simple. Retired rock star buys a country estate for himself and his family. In the grounds is a derelict waiting room from the days a line ran through the land. He hears noises and enlists the aid of celebrity TV ghost hunter, Julian Creed, to track down the source. Creed is a fraud. He doesnít really believe in the paranormal.
Until he spends a night in the waiting room!
Cottam writes in a style similar to Robert Goddard: an old fashioned, very English style. He has Goddardís sense of suspense too and the book is certainly a serious page-turner. I must admit, however, the ending totally floored me.
I was quite surprised to learn he launched the ladís magazine, FHM, followed by Total Sport and Menís Health. Strange. I would have had him down for more of an academic tan a magazine editor, although he has got a degree in history. He also grew up in my hometown of Southport but I never had the pleasure of meeting him.
The Waiting Room is his fourth book and it has made me curious to read the others. I feel sure we will hear a lot more from Mr Cottam butÖ crime writer?
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