They know her as Kali. She is there to see them off into the afterlife with kindness, with efficiency, and with two needles. She’s been a part of the right-to-die movement for years, an integral member, complicit in the deaths of twenty-seven men and women, all suffering from terminal illnesses.
And she just helped the wrong patient.
That’s the premise of Alex Dolan’s debut psychological thriller, The Euthanist. “Kali’s” first-person narration jumps off the page. We are riveted by what she does, and we engage with her enough that when she inevitably gets herself into trouble, we sympathize.
Is it possible to have a worse problem than a painful, terminal illness that you can only escape through death? Yes, it is. And Leland Moon has one of those problems: a thorny situation that can only be described as a kind of death-in-life for everyone involved. He uses manipulation, blackmail and violence in order to get Kali to help him.
Two characters who are unlikable at first glance but grow on you. A thorny issue to resolve of the most heartbreaking kind. A heroine whose purple pageboy wig and white nurse outfit with white boots, and angel of mercy with two needles who harkens to us from the land of Wong-Kar Wai punk. Throw in abducted children, amputee athletes, and the forks. You will never forget the forks.
Full disclosure: Alex Dolan was one of this year’s Debut Author honorees at Thrillerfest X in New York City, along with myself and a couple dozen others. But the table was so long and he was at one end and I was at the other that I hardly got to talk to him.
Author Bio: Alex Dolan was raised in Boston, lived in New York City, and currently resides in the San Francisco Bay Area. In addition to writing for several publications, he has recorded four music albums, and has a master’s degree in strategic communications from Columbia University. The Euthanist is his first novel.
Links to Dolan's website/social media:
- Website: www.alexdolan.com
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/alexdolan4
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/alexdolan
Publication Date: June 2, 2015
Formats: Print, ebook, audiobook
Publisher Name: Diversion Books
Number of pages: 315