Your Daily NEL: New English Library

Cheap and Nasty Seventies Horror Pulp

Laurence James – Paradise Lost

Posted by demonik on September 15, 2007

Laurence James – Paradise Lost (NEL 1984) paradise lost

Review by Nightreader

Paradise is the name of a very secluded, very exclusive and expensive Caribbean resort village for the pampered rich. The inhabitants of the luxury cabins on this remote island are real horrors in themselves: a surgery enhanced old lady with her stud toy boy, an aging gangster with his underage hooker playmate, a honeymooning gossip columnist with a cocaine habit and a very rich wife…

There’s also a brutal psychotic killer on the island, waiting to pick them off one by one.

The island staff are routinely swapped on Mondays, just when a huge storm hits the island, ensuring that the relief staff from the mainland are unable to land. The guests on the island are trapped. Someone has sent a message to the mainland saying the jetty is damaged and can’t receive the new staff…then the radio is smashed to bits. And the killings start.

This was a great fun read. Basically it’s Agatha Christie’s  Ten Little Niggers but with lots of sex and gory murders. And in the best tradition of whodunnits the killer isn’t revealed till the very end. There are lots of music references – one couple meet a very sticky end while Rod Stewart is playing on the stereo!

Nothing complicated here, the characters are interesting and superficially pretty awful people (just how we imagine celebs to be). Strangely you find yourself rooting for them by the end.

Good stuff. Recommended.

Review by Nightreader

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