The Wide, Carnivorous Sky and Other Monstrous Geographies by John Langan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Rarely will I read a short story collection that pulls me in quite as completely as this one did.
Or rather, it's a rare short story collection that not only pulls off truly excellent horror in every instance while simultaneously *deconstructing* the field, drawing in clever and wide literary techniques, WHILE also making it evocative and delicious.
Sometimes the voice breaks the fourth wall and sometimes it drenches you in a very dry sense of humor. Sometimes it's written in an immediate, deeply detailed way that drowns out the real world and swallows you whole.
Interestingly enough, Langon writes his won sophisticated takes on zombies, werewolves, and even vampires, but that is NOT to say they are at all derivative. Langon knows and loves his horror genre and brings his stories to truly excellent literary heights. He's a writer's writer, making his words sing and he always takes his time to fully develop each story.
I can't recommend him enough.
ALL of the stories are wonderful, but I should point out that I have a large fondness for a few.
Technicolor - A tribute to a Poe story written in a delightful lecturer's voice. I chortled and had to google the crap out of it.
City of the Dog - Post-Lovecraftian apocalypse Norman Rockwell.
Mother of Stone - Excellent investigative journalism meets... oh just read it. Langon pulls off something very special here. :)
I repeat: all of the stories are fantastic. :) But there's a very special treat for the end. Writer's notes. :)
There wasn't a single thing about this collection that didn't delight. :)
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