Reviewed by David Brzeski
I’d been meaning to get around to reading this for some time and I’m glad I finally did, because it’s very, very good!
I wouldn’t want to put an age range on this book, as I fear that would tend to put off many readers outside that range. Suffice to say this is very much an all ages book. There’s nothing in it that a concerned parent (except maybe that lunatic fringe of Christians who strive to get classics like ‘The Wizard of Oz’ pulled from school libraries) would worry about, yet it’s still totally satisfying for the adult reader.
The book opens with Deputy Les Charles witnessing the death of his best friend and partner, Sheriff Dave Ross– trampled by a dinosaur! Trapped under a heavy steel sign, Les is rescued by a seven foot giant in a skeleton suit.
We are then introduced to teenage outsider, Molly Aldrich, as she learns that she has enough credits to graduate high school.
As the weirdness starts to spread the giant skeleton man is ever-present, helping people, then disappearing as mysteriously as he arrived.
Another strange occurrence causes Molly to lose the job she hated anyway. She soon meets a strange black cat, who adopts her and subtly guides her towards where she needs to be. En route she meets a ghost (complete with sheet and eye-holes).
There’s a carnival coming to town. Thankfully, not a dark one, although there is something of the feel of Ray Bradbury’s weird fiction, not to mention Charles Finney’s ‘The Circus of Doctor Lao’ in the overall strangeness and sense of wonder in this book, which also echoes some of the classic children’s fiction of the past.
Any more detail would just serve as spoilers, so I’ll say no more other than to urge you to check out this wonderful book.
There’s more to come– a graphic novel is due from Dark Horse soon, followed by another prose book from Wild cat Press. I, for one, can’t wait.