Wednesday, 14 October 2015

John Dies at the End - David Wong Book Review

One of the great things about moving in with your significant other is that you have a whole realm of new books to read. Despite being a die hard horror movie fan, I very rarely venture into the depths of literature of this genre but whilst unpacking our books onto our newly bought bookshelf this one particularly stood out to me. With it's controversial title (who puts what happens in the end in the title of the book?!) and amputated arm image on the cover, you can't blame me for wanting to know more.

John Dies at the End is written by Jason Pargin under the pseudonym David Wong. It began as an online written series before being made into a novel. The story is told in first person narrative as David, a guy in his 20's working in a video store, tells a news reporter about the experience he and his best friend John have following a run in (one accidental, one not) with new street drug "soy sauce". "Soy sauce" heightens the senses ten fold and makes those who have consumed it see things others can't. David admits, no one is to be trusted, so the reader has to be careful about what they choose to believe throughout the tale.
Let me tell you now, I have never ever read anything like this and I really struggled to put this down. Pargin's imagination is out of this world. There's constantly something completely crazy going on and just when you think things are going to settle dwn or you have it sussed, it knocks the wind out of you once more. JDATE is fast paced; there was a couple of times where I had to re-read paragraphs to try and keep up. But this is absolutely not a critcism. With an alternate universe by the name of Korrok, monsters, posessions, and murder-a-plenty, all laced with comical story telling, John Dies at the End is perfect blend of gore and Shaun of the Dead style funny.

It has since been made into a movie and although the book falls under comical horror, I was excited to see how it transferred to the big screen but was massively disappointed at how budget and spoof-y it was. Stick with the novel here guys! I've recently learnt there's a sequel with an equally silly name "This Book is Full of Spiders" and it will definitely find a place on my Christmas list this year.

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