Dan Stout’s SF police procedural Titanshade begins with the murder of a Squib, an alien envoy. He may have been entertaining a “candy” (aka, prostitute). But then a police Divination Officer shows up at the crime scene and uses the victim’s blood to get the Spirit of the murdered Squib to speak. Magic on top of this quirky world was a bridge too far for me. I finished reading Titanshade but my opinion of the novel didn’t change. Dan Stout shoved too many themes into this book instead of focusing on the actual crime. I knew whodunit within the first 50 pages. Then I had to slog through Titanshade’s 407 pages to learn I was right. Carter, the Dirty-Harry detective who narrates the novel, takes a lot of punishment. But, I’m guessing Dan Stout is busy writing a sequel. GRADE: C

5 thoughts on “TITANSHADE By Dan Stout

  1. Jeff Meyerson

    I have to agree. There are interesting elements in it, I liked some of the noir narration, but he just throws in everything but the kitchen sink and it can’t hold up.

    1. george Post author

      Jeff, that’s exactly the way I felt about TITANSHADE. A good editor and a tighter focus would have improved the novel immensely.

  2. wolf

    For a moment I was confused – Stout, Rex Stout?
    Then I looked again …
    Is there any relation between the two Stouts?
    a Squib, an alien envoy
    So is this a mix of magic and detective story – with SF elements included?

    1. george Post author

      Wolf, like Jeff Meyerson wrote TITANSHADE has everything plus the “kitchen sink” (an American euphemism for excess). TITANSHADE would have been fine with just the SF elements. Adding in magic and noir overwhelms this reader.


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