Rag Time

A mummy had come to New York City, but he wasn’t  the brittle and shambling kind of monster seen in old movies. This guy was far worse. He was a giant, fast-moving serial killer with a penchant for removing the heads and limbs of his victims. 

The death toll was increasing nightly, but the NYPD was unconvinced there was any supernatural deviltry afoot. The probability of a rampaging mummy in Manhattan was totally insane. Mummies weren’t real, they argued. 

They were wrong of course. Many cultures around the globe have been practicing mummification for thousands of years as a way to preserve (and honor) the bodies of the dead. Of all the famous monsters you can think of, mummies were the real deal.

Like it or not, New York’s police department had a nasty mummy problem on its hands. Actually, that’s not totally true. It had two nasty mummy problems, and both of them were connected to events dating back to Egypt in 1888. Skullduggery, desecration and murder begat a double-barreled curse that doggedly followed the original culprits from Abydos to Manhattan. 

With the police in denial, it fell to a couple of defrocked department detectives to unwrap the escalating mummy mystery. Tom Reardon and Dan Reese were once partners on the force, but recent events had derailed their careers and their personal lives. No spoilers from me, but I’ll say this: a rowdy game of strip poker may have been the pair’s undoing. 

No longer friends, but still dedicated to justice, Reardon and Reese team up once again. Explained author J.G. Faherty: “They were like two pieces of a machine that didn’t operate properly when separated, but when joined together, they created a powerful force.”

The former cops knew an ancient Egyptian curse had infected Manhattan’s elite society. They had the receipts. Strips of ramie linen were found at every murder scene, suspicious activity was taking place at the city’s Egyptian Cultural Museum and specific symbols were seen etched into dead bodies. 

Things get literal in a flash when Reese dies and wakes up in Egyptian Hell. He successfully navigates the Lake of Fire and winds up in the Hall of Judgment where he comes face to face with Osiris the ruler of the Underworld and Anubis the Accuser. Eventually returning to his earthly body, Reese sees the endgame clearly. I’d like to thank the author for providing a big dose of helpful exposition during this deep dive into Egyptian mythology. 

Still, it wasn’t easy for Reardon and Reese to vanquish the two powerful mummies and their double curse. But somehow they did it. They overcame all the obstacles in their path and all it took was a quick jaunt through Hell. 

[Ragman / J.G. Faherty / First Printing: January 2023 / ISBN: 9781787587434]