& occasionally about other things, too...

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Puzzle of Murders

Brandon Pitt’s first novel, Puzzle of Murders, is a haunting, gripping tale.

Sam Giltine is a young man who embarks – rather inadvertently – on a killing spree when he fails to kill the man who raped his sister.  

The novel has a multi-layered structure that unfolds rapidly.

There is a strong physical dimension to the book.

The robust, solid descriptions of Sam’s world – Faridemidland, the deadbeat, forgettable and wasted hometown he runs away from, to the polluted and permeable back alleys of Los Angeles.

There is also an intangible, amorphous dimension of the varied ways in which Sam’s mind works.

It is at this level that the book transcends from a story of a serial killer and transmogrifies; it becomes an exploration of transformations of a mind that is prone to involuntary callisthenics.

In this world, religion and spiritualism take on hues that make them unrecognisable from each other.

Brandon adroitly acquaints us with Mormonism, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and the concepts of Avatar in Hinduism, Rasool in Islam, the philosophies of Bodhisattva and Zarathustra.
Brandon Pitts

This is clearly Brandon’s forte. 

He makes these discursive excursions into spirituality and understanding the meaning of realisation evocative without ever becoming preachy or pompous or hallucinatory.

The other aspect of the novel that stays with you  is the soft, pastel shades Brandon gives to all his women characters, especially Eisheth Percy.

He is masterly when he describes Sam’s love-hate and lust for Lilth Jahl.  

I personally would’ve liked if there was a bit more of Kali Naamah, Tamara and the stripper, the Avatar of God.

But, ultimately, the book is about murders – the coldblooded and the random manner in which Sam kills people.

This is what makes Puzzle of Murders a page turner.

There is pure horror in the psychotic pleasure that Sam derives in plunging a knife through his victims and sees the “life force” leave their bodies.

BookLand Press continues to experiment with different genres and manages to unearth undiscovered talent. 


  1. What a great and attentive review of Brandon's book. He is definitely great at using religious symbolism,to bring color to his work!

    I had a great time reading this book as well.

  2. Congratulations Mayank for yet another great book review.
    This time, about Brandon Pitts' first published novel.
    You have demonstrated a great deal of knowledge about the intellect that permeates throughout Brandon's book.
    Wishing you and Brandon all the best and hoping to read more of your great reviews in the near future.

    Leo Paradela.