Review: David Morrell's "Creepers"

Post date: May 25, 2013 5:39:52 PM

The past plays a major role in many of David Morrell’s novels, and Creepers is no different. A group of creepers – urban explorers who break into old abandoned buildings to document the past – are joined by a reporter as they enter the Paragon Hotel, a once posh hotel that now rots along with many other buildings in Ashbury Park on the Jersey shore. Inside they find secrets – and terrors – that have lain hidden for nearly a hundred years.

The Paragon itself is a time capsule capturing the history of once popular beach resort of Ashbury Park. Individual rooms stand as memorials to former guests who lived and often died there. But the times gone by of Ashbury Park and the Paragon are not the only histories that concern Morrell. Most of the characters in this novel have pasts they would rather forget, and Morrell explores how those pasts can shape or corrupt the individual.

Three of the characters are victims of one sort of torture or another. One faced torment as a POW during the Iraq war. Another was sexually abused as a child. The third was imprisoned by a psychopathic killer. How those experiences shaped their lives is a major theme of the novel.

Creepers starts slow, but builds to a fast paced, heart-thumping climax.