By: Robert Jackson Bennett
(Thriller/Horror/With Fantasy Elements)
This book defies categorization. While it’s advertised as a thriller or horror novel, I felt like it was more of a fantasy thriller with a bit of horror. It had it’s moments, but it didn’t feel to me like a horror novel, nor did it feel quite as fast paced as I would expect a thriller to be. Then with a creation myth, a quest for something mystical, and even an appearance by fae…well, that says fantasy to me, but a very grounded kind of fantasy. Am I making any sense? Lets see how the rest of this goes.
This novel is odd. No one is quite who they appear to be and there are quite a few unexpected twists and turns. Everything I would hope to expect from a story about a traveling vaudeville troupe. It is both fantastical and real. Nothing works out perfectly, people die, there are consequences, and yet everything was still tied up neatly in the end. In the beginning I didn’t find any of the characters to be super likeable, but I think that’s what was intended. They are all damaged in some way, and thrown together, but Stanley will always be my favorite.
I really enjoyed this story’s take on good versus evil. Rather than the usual theme, this was more a conflict of existence versus nothingness. I think that’s really unique. In all it proved to be a great story, and I’d definitely recommend it. I’ll be sure to check out his other books at some point in the future as well. Until next time…