Written by: Paula Limbaugh
Truly, I don’t think I would’ve picked up this book to read if it wasn’t given to me; sadly that would have been a great mistake on my part. It’s odd, I once wrote a piece for Greyhart Press about not judging books by their cover, and yet that’s what I am guilty of. I’m not sure what I expected, but I can say I was totally blown away once I began reading! I do want to add, as I don’t want to discredit the artwork; the cover makes sense once you know what’s inside. Perhaps it’s the kid in me always looking for the bright, shiny packaging that at first I didn’t appreciate the cover.
First off, the book is done in two parts, Side A and Side B. Berti Walker is the contributor to the A side and Alex S. Johnson the flip side. Both sides contain short stories.
So let’s start with Berti Walker, she begins her side with a twisted verse titled Snow White and the Seven Pervs, which reminded me of the “dirty” limericks we all heard as kids; a bit of fun before being hit with the true depth of her story telling. Stories like Lagoon, It’s Not What You Think! and The Autistic Avenger bring on dawning horror only to make you realize how heart wrenchingly sad they really are. Quickborn, Zombie Apocalypse Anonymous, Terminated, Harvest Day, and Better than Altamont are a bit more whimsical, the kind of stories that have you asking, Whaaat? And then, we have the nasty horror, you know the ones that makeup nightmares. The Monster Within, The Big Apple, Happy Accidents, and Castigation will surely make you squirm!
Now to the B side. Back in the days of 45s (does anyone remember those little vinyl records?) the B side was always the less popular song. Not so, in this case. The B side here is filled with more stories of a different writing style. Alex S. Johnson’s stories delve more into the seedier side of horror.
Alex runs the full gamut here, from waxing esoteric with the likes of Nightmare in a Glass Eye, Dogs of the Future, and The Universal Retina, to the utterly bizarre as in Deatherz, Beyond the Wall of Gore, and Biodom. To borrow a line from The Mister Chompers Massacre, I have to ask-“Dude. What. The. Fuck?” You’ll also be asking that question after reading The Bride of Freakenstein, The Bizarrely Departed, and The Soft Detectives. Wickedly nasty are Godhammer and Smoking Hotties. And, to wrap everything up, Johnson ends with Ghastly Funeral Theater, a surreal look of hostessing in Japan.
Would I recommend this book to everyone, probably not. Those who flinch at profanity may not appreciate all of the stories. But for the rest of you who are looking for something a little out of your norm, I say yes! Pick up a copy here, for this really is some Fucked Up Shit!