The Music of Razors
by Cameron Rogers
Review by Steve Sawicki
Del Rey Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780345493194
Date: 01 May 2007 List Price $13.95 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /
The story begins in 19th century Boston where a young doctor falls afoul of the law and then falls in with a British confidence artist. Together they bring forth something that had been long cast out and long forgotten. Meanwhile, in London, a father, haunted by the voice of a angel, presents his daughter with a clockwork ballerina. The two events are linked as the father moves on to find someone to take over his burden. A hundred years later he believes he has found not one but two, a brother and sister. So, as Hope sleeps, Walter confronts power unimaginable. When Hope wakes in the morning, Walter does not, having taken up journey on the dark road. But Walter has sworn to protect his sister regardless of how bestial he becomes. Whether or not he can save her is the key question. Whether or not he can save himself seems to be a question no longer.
This is a book that is a bit hard to categorize. Part horror, part fantasy and part magic realism with a surreal bend to it, it moves in and out of these genres as smoothly as oil on water. Rogers does an excellent job keeping the story moving, given that the story itself is so opaque and almost unknowable. It's hard, sometimes, to grasp exactly what is going on and why it is going on. The characters become confused and time seems to run differently for some over others. In the end it all makes sense and comes together in a cohesive ending.
While I struggled to really like this book I also found myself compelled to read on. I'm not sure if it was my trying to figure out what Rogers was up to or whether it was the writing that held just enough mystery to keep one wondering. Whatever the reason the book is interesting in that you are unlikely to find anything even remotely like it on the shelves. A definitely plus if you are looking for something a bit different and a definite read if you like your horror mixed with surreal fantasy and told in a taut storyline that is not afraid to wander where importance might be found.