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column 113a 05/43 The Talking Devil column


Doc Savage is the target of a new, malevolent foe -- the spirit of the King of Evil, who utters murderous commands through an ancient Chinese Devil Doll. Is Doc cursed? Or has a maniacal criminal genius discovered the ultimate key to Doc's destruction? To survive, the Man of Bronze plunges into a terrifying struggle that can end only one way -- death!


1943 - 1943
B109 - B109
Clark - Clark
Larkin - Larkin
Nanovic - Nanovic
novel - novel
pulp - pulp
column Comments  column


Note: Comments may contain spoilers.

Gary Chaloner

This one's a real ripper. Doc's brain operation gets exposed and he gets framed as being the mastermind behind an intricate plot that involves
his patients and the bleeding of funds from wealthy companies.

A fantastic premise, as I always thought Doc's brain ops and the upstate hospital itself where a very weak link in his armour. There's no way he could keep his amazing operation a secret for too long. Some master criminal or crim's relative out for revenge (whatever) would surely stumble across Doc's drastic method of rehabilitation sooner or later.

The Talking Devil of the title is a small doll that supposedly "talks" to Sam Joseph, dear friend and office manager to millionaire Montague Ogden. Ogden brings in Doc to diagnose Joseph and eventually operate on Joseph's cerebral fibroma. From there, the story twists and turns in a snappy tale of murder, kidnapping, mindgames and biffo.

I didn't think I'd enjoy this book as much as I did. The reason? Doc is portrayed as very human, not a perfect superhero that's called in to clean up the mess after everything has gone off the rails. The villain does outfox Doc (for a while) and it's because of this that Doc's actions hold more weight. He's involved in the story on a personal level.

All in all, a very enjoyable Doc adventure. Recommended.

Major Gripe: Nothing major, though I'm always dissappointed when only four of the five Doc aides are present in an adventure. This time Johnny is omitted. No Pat either.

Favorite Scene: Monk and Doc attack a derelict paddle steamer where hostages are held — Monk has a great stomping set-to with a bad guy on a tree used as a gangplank!

Rating: 8/10

- | - November 2, 2002 08:53 PM

Andrew Salmon

I agree with Gary, this one is a rip-snorter! Great idea, great action, great execution!! With enough twists and turns to make you dizzy. I like stories that deal with the crime college. It is a controversial idea and carries its own consequenceses! A superior Doc adventure!!

- | - July 29, 2003 02:58 AM


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