The Search for Joseph Tully

William H. Hallahan


Have you ever felt the icy, cold touch of death brush the nape of your neck, as if a specter follows your every move in waking life and the dream world? If not, you should breathe a sigh of relief and count yourself lucky. Pete Richardson hasn’t been afforded that kind of fortune.
       For him, the mundane merry-go-round ?of daily life is filled with the kind of paranoia that one would experience in the aftermath of immense tragedy. The question is: what tragedy would prompt such fear? Even he can’t answer that.
       On the surface, he’s just a regular “joe” working a menial office job. He enjoys his morning coffee, an occasional snifter of brandy, and fraternizes with fellow neighbors on the impending demolition of their Brooklyn apartment building. He even has a front row seat to the wrecking ball outside his window. Sounds normal enough!
       Despite his skepticism, he follows the advice from friends and neighbors and searches for answers in places he doubts the most: horoscopes, Tarot readings, seances, and hypnosis. But he comes as close to discovering the truth as he does to hysteria.
       All the while, an attorney from London, named Matthew Willow, makes landfall on U.S. soil and bounces from town to town, hot on the trail of the Tully family whose lineage dates back to the 1700s. His investigation drags him from New York to New Jersey and back, covering the ground like an archaeologist on the hunt for the holy grail. But what’s his grail and how does Richardson factor into it?
       Considered a classic of the horror genre, The Search for Joseph Tully is a clever and engrossing tale told by a master craftsman who wrings every ounce of suspense from its pages. Hallahan is the Hitchcock of macabre prose, constructing an elaborate puzzle that uses the guise of genealogy to tell a story so chilling that you’ll question the very nature of time and space.
       It’s a story riddled with religious overtones, repressed memories, paganistic delight and even a little bit of the Latin language. They’re motifs that harken back to a time when monks and priests followed doctrines so strict that any maleficence would be deemed heresy. That is the time of Tully, an enigma wrapped in 18th century robes, and a character hidden from view but lurking in plain sight. As you’ll soon find out, revenge really is a dish best served ice-cold.
       William H. Hallahan (1925-2018) was an American author, raised in Brooklyn. He served three years in the United States Navy, then attended Temple University in Philadelphia where he obtained degrees in journalism and English.
       This edition of The Search for Joseph Tully includes a new introduction by Michael Saler, photographs and old book covers, an afterword by William H. Hallahan, and a bonus short story, “The New Tenant.”

edition information

  • Limited to 400 signed copies.
  • Includes a new introduction and bonus stories and essays.
  • Signed by Michael Saler and David Ho, with a facsimile signature by William H. Hallahan.
  • Dustjacket, endpaper, frontispiece, and interior illustrations by David Ho.
  • Illustrated endpapers.
  • Top-edge stain.
  • Ribbon marker, head and tail bands, bound in Brillianta black cloth.
  • Full dustjacket illustration pasted down on front board.
  • Smyth-sewn binding.
  • Original book price: $80.
  • Book size 5¼ × 8¾ inches.
  • Number of pages: 312.
  • Published August 2022.
  • ISBN 978-1-61347-283-5.