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Formats
Ebook Details
  • 01/2022
  • 978-0-6453418-1-2 B09L82MVB5
  • 160 pages
  • $0.99
Paperback Details
  • 01/2022
  • 978-0645341805 B09L82MVB5
  • 228 pages
  • $10.81
A Screw Loose
Investigative Journalist Leif Lacroux interviews Prison Officer turned Mass-Murderer Edward Montana, following the largest inner jail murders the country has ever seen.
Reviews
Wright debuts with a twisty story of a prison official taking revenge into his own hands. In 2018, Eddie Montana, a former correction officer, killed seven inmates of Australia’s Karcher Detention Centre, which houses child molesters, rapists, and murders. When journalist Leif Lacroux lands an exclusive interview with Eddie following his trial, he feels himself being swept in by Eddie’s charisma, even while making little progress on piecing together his story. Leif’s interviews and his nightmare-filled, alcohol-soaked time in between are interrupted by transcripts from Eddie’s trial, which slowly reveal the details of his actions and the grandiose, religious justifications Eddie has for them.

Wright avoids sensationalism when detailing the crimes of Eddie’s victims and Eddie’s own troubled past. The accounts of his murder spree share some gory specifics, but in general, Wright leaves much to the imagination. Despite the slim action and sparse descriptions, there is something almost cinematic in this telling, a power that will keep readers fixated on the story and the gaps Eddie intentionally side steps. Leif’s nightmares are especially effective because they offer sensory details lacking in most other scenes. The comparisons that Leif makes to capture Eddie’s allure (Hitler and Dracula, notably) telegraph his disturbing appeal alongside his disarming friendliness and insistent, rigid moral code. Eddie’s religious justifications (he claims he’s never hurt a human being, only “demons”), receive just enough content to be understood without overwhelming the other elements.

Psychological thriller fans will be caught up from the beginning. Particularly arresting is the use of trial notes to flesh out facts and explain surprising actions, as well as the possibilities of Eddie’s background, including the possibility of sexual abuse victimhood. The final day of interviews takes a surreal, chilling turn, and though the finale veers into conspiracy-theory territory, the buildup makes it all seem surprisingly plausible. Fans of dissecting crime will enjoy unwrapping this descent into a deluded man’s convictions.

Takeaway: This psychological thriller’s uncanny elements and blended formats create a chilling image of a murderer and his deadly appeal.

Great for fans of: Brian Evenson, Joyce Carol Oates’s Zombie.

Production grades
Cover: A
Design and typography: B+
Illustrations: N/A
Editing: A
Marketing copy: A-

Formats
Ebook Details
  • 01/2022
  • 978-0-6453418-1-2 B09L82MVB5
  • 160 pages
  • $0.99
Paperback Details
  • 01/2022
  • 978-0645341805 B09L82MVB5
  • 228 pages
  • $10.81

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