The Wind In My Heart by Douglas Wynne
Miles Landry is trying to put violence behind him when he takes up work as a private detective focused on humdrum adultery cases. But when a Tibetan monk hires him to find a missing person, things get weird fast.
Charged with tracking down the reincarnation of a man possessed by a demonic guardian from the Tibetan Book of the Dead, Miles is plunged into a world of fortune-tellers, gangsters, and tantric rituals. The year is 1991 and a series of grisly murders has rocked New York City in the run up to a visit from the Dalai Lama.
The police attribute the killings to Chinatown gang warfare. Miles–skeptical of the supernatural–is inclined to agree. But what if the monster he's hunting is more than a myth?
Proudly represented by Crystal Lake Publishing—Tales from the Darkest Depths.
Interview with the author:
What makes this Horror/Noir novel so special?
I’ve always been attracted to mashups of my favorite genres. I think what makes The Wind In My Heart special is that it takes the best of both worlds from crime novels and horror thrillers and adds a dash of the supernatural with a Tibetan twist. I’d like to think it’s a unique cocktail.
Tell us more about your lead character.
Miles Landry is a private detective with a short fuse and a black sense of humor. He’s suffered some personal losses that have left him pretty hardened. He’s a pragmatic ex-military man who views the world with a skeptical eye. But he also tries to keep an open mind when his clients have an open wallet. So it's interesting to see what happens when a group of Buddhist monks hires him to solve a supernatural mystery. His world view is bound to clash with theirs, but he may learn something along the way.
Why should readers give this book or your work a try?
So much of supernatural horror and thriller fiction is based on Judeo-Christian premises. I wanted to explore a different perspective on gods, demons, and the afterlife, and to contrast that with a very American setting. The result is a violent, urban occult thriller with the voice of a classic noir. It’s a quick, entertaining read with some deep philosophical roots that have interested me for decades.
Douglas Wynne knows how to craft a captivating tale. The Wind In My Heart--while taking place in the 1990s--hearkens back to the hard-boiled detective stories of authors like Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler. For being a couple of generations removed from the anti-hero protagonists of those books, Miles Landry wouldn't be out of place at all. Of course, it helps the aesthetic that this takes place in New York's Chinatown. Blending this combination of an old school detective noir with Eastern philosophy--in the Tibetan crisis-conscious New York of the early 1990s--creates an enchanting sort of mandala in literary form. Threads of the story circle back around, creating new patterns and surprising twists as the narrative takes shape and arrives at a final form...before being swept away like sand as you reach the conclusion and set the book aside. Hired by the monks of a Buddhist community center to investigate what they believe to be a supernaturally perpetrated series of murders, Landry must traverse a dangerous gauntlet between Chinese gangs, the police, and a possible supernatural threat that stands to tear his world apart. Unlike altogether too many books, there was an unexpected twist to this story...but not one that felt flimsy or poorly crafted. Nothing about Wynne's book was poorly crafted.