Costello, Matthew J. 1948-
COSTELLO, Matthew J. 1948-
(Matt Costello, Matthew John Costello)
PERSONAL: Born 1948.
CAREER: Novelist. Composes game scenarios for computer games.
Sleep Tight, Zebra (New York, NY), 1987.
(As Matt Costello) Revolt on Majippor: A Crossroads Adventure in the World of Robert Silverberg's Majipoor, Tor (New York, NY), 1987.
(As Matt Costello) Fate's Trick, Tom Doherty Associates (New York, NY), 1988.
Guardians of the Three, Volume Three: The Wizard of Tizare, Bantam (New York, NY), 1989.
Beneath Still Waters, Berkley Books (New York, NY), 1989.
Child's Play Two (novelization of screenplay), Jove (New York, NY), 1990.
Midsummer, Diamond (New York, NY), 1990.
Time of the Fox, Roc (New York, NY), 1990.
Child's Play Three (novelization of screenplay), Jove (New York, NY), 1991.
Wurm, Diamond (New York, NY), 1991.
Hour of the Scorpion, Roc (New York, NY), 1991.
Homecoming, Berkley Books (New York, NY), 1992.
Day of the Snake, Roc (New York, NY), 1992.
Garden, introduction by F. Paul Wilson, illustrations by Stephen Honthy, Twilight Publishing Co. (Sparta, NJ), 1993.
Seaquest DSV: Fire Below, Millennium (London, England), 1994.
(Coauthor with F. Paul Wilson) Mirage, Warner Books (New York, NY), 1996.
(Coauthor with F. Paul Wilson) Masque, Warner Books (New York, NY), 1998.
Poltergeist, the Legacy: Maelstrom, Ace Books (New York, NY), 2000.
Unidentified, Berkley Books (New York, NY), 2002.
Missing Monday, Berkley Books (New York, NY), 2004.
The Greatest Puzzles of All Time, Prentice Hall Press (New York, NY), 1988.
The Greatest Games of All Time, J. Wiley (New York, NY), 1991.
How to Write Science Fiction, Paragon House (New York, NY), 1992.
Magic Everywhere: How to Do Absolutely Incredible Magic with Totally Ordinary Things, illustrations by Glenn Chadbourne, Three Rivers Press (New York, NY), 1999.
Author of numerous game scripts, including The Seventh Guest and its sequel, The Eleventh Hour. Also author of short fiction.
SIDELIGHTS: New York-based writer Matthew J. Costello is the author of horror and science-fiction novels, as well creator of scenario scripts for computer games such as The Seventh Guest and its sequel, The Eleventh Hour. Costello's early works, such his first novel, Sleep Tight, show the influence of New England horror writer H. P. Lovecraft and, while relatively unpolished, indicate the eye for character and suspenseful writing that Costello has developed in his more-recent books. In addition to penning straight genre fiction, Costello has experimented by crossing horror with science fiction, and also writes novelizations of screenplays and short fiction.
Costello's novel Homecoming tells the story of Simon Farrell, who is taken hostage and brutalized, then released into a world to which he no longer relates. He tries to piece his marriage back together, but a serial killer on the loose in the area soon comes after Farrell and his family, threatening to make the man a victim once more. A reviewer for Publishers Weekly stated that Homecoming shows that "Costello can write with power and pathos."
Mirage, a medical thriller co-written with F. Paul Wilson, delves into the world of human memory and a research project that would make it possibly to investigate memories through computer technology. A contributor to Publishers Weekly wrote that while "the virtual reality sequences in the novel provide stunningly surreal images," the novel's plot is "steeped in melodrama." In Booklist, reviewer F. Paul Wilson called the book "a gripping yarn that … deserves a huge success." Costello's follow-up novel, Masque, deals with clones and the ability to manipulate identities by loading new DNA. A reviewer for Publishers Weekly called the book "a flashy entertainment that splices hardware fantasies and unsettling speculations on human bioengineering into a routine espionage caper."
Unidentified is the story of three women and the secrets hidden in a house in the mountains of northern Scotland. Sophie MacDonald carries a copy of her father's secret research with her at all times, and when she returns from school to find he has been killed she knows it is time to flee. Meanwhile, Maddy Hodge, an English photographer, learns her brother has disappeared and she may be the only one who can rescue him. Finally, American Elaina Dali goes on the run after she discovers a mysterious genetic code at a research company. When the three women, the Scottish house's secrets are revealed. Kristine Huntley, in a review for Booklist, called Unidentified an "exciting page-turner," while Harriet Klausner wrote in AllScifi.com that the novel is "the best kind of horror novel" because it feature the necessary ingredients: "a slow revelation of the problem, a short time to fix it, and a climactic ending."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
St. James Guide to Horror, Ghost, and Gothic Writers, St. James Press (Detroit, MI), 1996.
Booklist, October 1, 1996, review of Mirage, p. 324; July, 2002, Kristine Huntley, review of Unidentified, p. 1832.
Publishers Weekly, October 12, 1992, review of Homecoming, p. 69; October 7, 1996, review of Mirage, p. 60; February 3, 1997, review of Mirage, p. 42; March 9, 1998, review of Masque, p. 53; May 26, 2003, review of Artifact: A Daredevils Club Adventure, p. 54.
AllSciFi.com, http://www.allscifi.com/ (April 22, 2004), Harriet Klausner, review of Missing Monday and Unidentified.