Friday, June 8, 2012

Review: Wood (a novella) ~ by Robert Dunbar


Review by Shellie for: Wood ~ by Robert Dunbar

A metaphorical and darkly hilarious novella about an environmentally poisoned wood where a ravenous monster awakens.

About:  A young ward of the state decides to leave the safety of her group home to return home to her dying grandmother. Her friend reminds her of the darkness that lurks outside of the doors; a monster is waking up slowly to a deep hunger in the dead woods. There is no food to satisfy its need, not even a starving rat. Where will it feed?

A lonely gay man living on the edge of the woods opens his door for the runaway girl in time to save her from what lurks in the cold darkness. This is their story.

Thoughts:  A story with a moral, its more funny than scary – though that’s not to say that I did not get the chills or that my heart remained at its regular pace for the entire novel. It is a chilling tale. But laughing while one has goose pimples is a curious sensation; Wood definitely did this for me.

Even better, it’s only a 60 page novella with some colorful characters. Socially marginal individuals – these people are loners, orphans, and from the hidden classes of society. They are those that remain in the peripheral of our vision, barely noticed, but have their valid tales to tell. What’s important to their story is that these characters are not victims, creating a different example for those faced with real life horrors.

Intelligent with some snarky dialog, this is not a typical horror story. It’s an emotional roller coaster trip through metaphorical darkness and hilarity. A 4-star in my opinion. I recommended it for anyone who likes unusual characters, complex dry humor, and  surprisingly nice endings.

Robert Dunbar is a writer, editor, and playwright. He has written for radio, television and theater and is the author of The Pines, The Shore, Martyrs & Monsters, and Willy.

He is amazingly funny and in his spare time he likes to imagine himself as a professional ice skater, or possibly a trainer of tarantulas for jungle pictures. Find out more about him at his website and blog; Goodreads (his group there ~ Literary Horror); Twitter; and Facebook.

For an insightful interview with Robert Dunbar, and more about his other books please see our post from 2011.

I reviewed Robert’s book WILLY in 2011 (text links to Shellie’s review). It also made our 2011 best of the year list (links to the list).

Have a fabulous weekend!


Stepping Out of the Page said...

Wow - what a great review! I think that this one sounds quite different but very fascinating. I don't read many novellas, but I think I should try to read some. I hadn't heard of this book before, so thanks for the introduction!

New to your blog!
Steph @ Stepping Out of the Page

Unknown said...

Hi Steph -
I hope you enjoy it. I know its not very expensive, but I am not sure it's available in the UK???

Let me know what you think!

Unknown said...

Steph -
It is available for you in the UK!

Welcome to Layers of Thought.. I hope you enjoy our posts.

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