Dale T. Phillips - Writer
The Zack Taylor mystery series, book #5:
A Sharp Medicine
Zack Taylor’s life is once again in shambles. Having narrowly escaped death, guilty over the pain he’s caused a loved one, he’s hurting and angry. When looking into the disappearance of a reporter, Zack’s death wish may be his cure for his troubles as he uncovers corruption and evil in a world of politics, passion, and power.
“I’ll bet a sawbuck Dale Phillip’s PI Zack Taylor is related to Lawrence Block’s Matt Scudder. It wouldn’t surprise me either if he were also a distant cousin of Mickey Spillane’s Mike Hammer on one side and Robert Parker’s Spenser on the other. Except instead of Boston or New York, Taylor works the hardscrabble streets of Maine. Phillip’s style goes down as smoothly as a fine bourbon and his writing is as mean as any junkyard dog.”
–Dave Zeltserman, author of Small Crimes
“A Sharp Medicine, the fifth Taylor outing, churns forward with the dark inevitability of Classical Greek drama, revealing as it goes a penetrating awareness of the violent dimensions of present day America. Dale Phillips is hitting bull’s eyes with this one.”
–David Daniel, author of the award-winning Alex Rasmussen mystery series and Inflections & Innuendos
The Zack Taylor mystery series, book #4:
A Certain Slant of Light
Trapped by a final promise to a dying woman, a reluctant Zack Taylor seeks her missing grandson, a slippery con man of the art world. Zack discovers the corruption beneath the glossy exteriors, confronting murder, greed, fraud, and a host of crimes that belie the beauty of the art in which the people deal.
“A work of excellence. Each page turns with adventure and enthusiasm. The main character – although he is ‘larger than life’ in some ways is a completely believable character anyone can identify with. A great read.”
— Amazon review
The Zack Taylor mystery series, book #3
A Shadow on the Wall
Ex-con Zack Taylor is desperately trying to build a better, saner life, but Fate has a different plan. His new business venture is threatened, his girlfriend has dumped him, and now a vengeful killer has been freed to stalk Zack once again.
Things get complicated when a mysterious recluse hires Zack to consult on a movie. Zack is adrift in a world of shadows, and must separate the real from the unreal. Someone doesn’t want the film to be made, and small acts of sabotage escalate.
Then people start dying, and Zack has another killer to deal with.
“A high-octane Mystery/Thriller that moves seamlessly from dilemma to dilemma as Zack Taylor navigates the deadly mysteries playing out around him. Zack sizzles as a man with a troubled past trying to turn over a new leaf, and as a pawn and an unwilling player in an agenda he must understand before it kills him.”
–Vlad Vaslyn, Amazon review
“A great summer read. If you haven’t read the previous two books in the Zack Taylor series (“A Memory of Grief” and “A Fall From Grace”), you’ll be looking them up.”
— Amazon review
The Zack Taylor mystery series, book #2:
A Fall From Grace
When a single mother is wrongly accused of murder, Zack Taylor must work to clear her name. Not an easy task, as everyone in town thinks she’s guilty. Zack finds plenty of people who wanted the victim dead. As the events around him spiral out of control, Zack begins to do the same.
“Zack Taylor is back and ready to rumble. In A Fall From Grace, he digs in like a pit bull to exonerate a woman accused of murder and find the real killer. The answers lie buried within small town politics, dysfunctional family relations and crooked land deals, but finding the truth can exact a cost. Dale Phillips delivers a powerful and ultimately haunting sequel to his debut novel, A Memory of Grief.”
The Zack Taylor mystery series, book #1
A Memory of Grief
Ex-con Zack Taylor is a man drifting through life, haunted and guilt-ridden from a past gunshot tragedy. When his friend dies in Maine of an apparent suicide, Zack is driven to pursue the truth. With only his wits and physical skills, he takes on life-threatening opponents, including an aggressive karate instructor, drug-dealing bikers, and a sinister crime gang. Despite finding a new love, his rage and ghosts drive him closer to the edge as he takes ever-greater risks with the law and his life.
“Zack Taylor is hot. With anger, grief, testosterone, muscle—and booze when he lets himself, though he tries not to. And he’s hot on a case of suicide that his gut tells him is murder. No pro, he acts out of some time-worn sense of honor—as Hammett might’ve said: When a man’s friend is killed, he ought to do something.
Wounded by life, Taylor is a loner who makes friends easily, and enemies even more easily. Beginning in the heat of Miami, he treks north to Portland, Maine, where things get way hotter.
Dale T. Phillips writes a clean, efficient prose and spins a yarn that’s as gritty as any I’ve read in recent years. There’s humor, violence, ghosts, and sex—all the good stuff that has driven stories forever.”
The Zack Pack
This collection combines the first three Zack Taylor mysteries into one volume. Contains A Memory of Grief, A Fall From Grace, and A Shadow on the Wall.
“I once went along to the studio where a friend of mine practices Tai Chi. My friend is a Jungian therapist, a vegetarian. Granted, he watches football and likes action movies like Die Hard. Mindless violence is cathartic, he explained. I thought he meant that watching it was cathartic until I visited the studio. This wasn’t like watching a bunch of elderly Chinese people in the park. My friend and his sparring partners were really going at it!
Just so you know, Zack Taylor is into cathartic violence. There’s nothing zen-like about his martial arts practice. I’ve lost track of the number of times he got hurt (he asked for it), the number of guys he killed (they asked for it) over the course of the three books in this series. To say that Zack has anger management issues would be an understatement, as he’d be the first to admit.
But here’s the great thing about buying the boxed set: you get to watch Zack grow and mellow out a bit, as author Dale Phillips hits his stride in the third book. The characters get richer as Zack lets himself trust people. Foils like the bad cop Lagasse can surprise you, a cynical stuntwoman-turned-script girl leaves Zack’s ex-girlfriend in the shade. I hope she comes back to complicate Zack’s love life, and I wouldn’t mind seeing Theo again. Old Zack’s on a learning curve, and I want to see how he does in the next book. I’m in it for the long haul.”
Shadow of the Wendigo
A Horror Thriller
In the snowy Canadian wilderness, a terrifying legend springs to life, sparking a series of gruesome crimes. Government agent Sean Laporte is sent to investigate, and must contend with an obsessive, resourceful foe, a hostile environment, and an elusive search for the truth. He is soon pulled between worlds of myth and madness, a present haunted by the past, and a primitive world of mystery and power.
In this book, the myths described by Joseph Campbell are crossed with a David Lynch-type world of dreams and visions. Gruesome crimes set off a chain of events, and a wilderness chase begins. We have the heroes journey, where he is the gateway between different worlds. In a hostile place where a mistake can mean death, Sean Laporte must overcome many obstacles, including his own disbelief.
“In the exciting new genre of cryptofiction-meets-horror, the prolific writer Dale T. Phillips brings his talents to the fore. Join Dale on this exciting journey, written with a sound cryptozoological foundation, full of many surprises, at every twist and turn, along these shadowed, forested pathways. Highly recommended.”
Cryptozoologist, Author, Documentary Consultant, and Director of the International Cryptozoology Museum, Portland, Maine