A dead woman from Haiti has been found dead in a shabby apartment in New Orleans. Her head was chopped off with excessive force and when the police investigators enters the crime scene, they find her nine-year-old girl sitting in a tree with a bloody ax in her hand. The girl's name is Marie Duval, and during the investigation, it is revealed that she probably has been the object of a failed voodo ritual.
Has this nine-year-old girl really been able to assault and behead her mother all alone? What unknown ferocity drove her to commit that brutish murder? What happened in the dilapidated house shortly before the murder? These are some of the questions homicide detective Val Bosanquet seeks to find an answer to.
Ten years later, Marie Duval reappear in Val Bosanquet's life when she receives a scholarship, given access to a school of art. Suddenly demons from the past are unleashed and Val Bosanquet finds himself in a race against time where there is more at stake than just his own life ...
'An evil shadow' is an excellent thriller. I would say that Aj Davidson has a little trouble separating past from present at the beginning of the book. The reader is thrown headlong into the action. Normally, I like these kinds of introductions, which in a short time pulls the story off, but maybe things goes a little too fast. Similarly, the ending of 'An evil shadow' are also very abrupt. I was actually momentarily convinced that I had missed a chapter, which was not the case.
Having said that, I must say that it has been a pleasure to read 'An evil shadow'. As mentioned, the history takes place in New Orleans and in the surrounding swamps. In my opinion, there are no more evocative location for that kind of stories than the one you find in the French Quarter in New Orleans. There is something mysterious and obscure in this part of town, and it really brings the story to life.
'An evil shadow' could easily have been longer than the 230 pages it occupies now, without making the story dull. Aj Davidson describes the events vividly and with sufficiently details for you to feel that you are present along with the main characters in the book. Aj Davidson is going to be on my list of authors I like to read another time.