book discussions Book Reviews Horror

RETARD by Daniel I. Russell

“A mother and child, living alone, with the mother using physical means to discipline her child, would at least be heavily investigated and monitored today. Back then, it was par for the course, the situation attracting only gossip and disapproval, but of course everyone was too busy to intervene…”


I spend a lot of time searching ‘recommended’ reads from Amazon. Not just blind recommendations – the ones that say “we see you enjoyed the fucked up shit that you bought last month… try THIS!” (Thanks, Amazon. You’re awesome!)

I had gotten pretty deep into my search, so I cannot remember which authors, and books, led me to RETARD.  It involved some Matt Shaw, Ian Woodhead’s newest titles, Sam West, and a couple of authors from Cut Corners, (Volumes 1 & 2)… just to name a few.

December, 1987.
Single mother Christine Stephenson watches with envy as the Birthday boy opens his present. A Fabled Four action figure. Her special son is obsessed with The Fabled Four but how could she possibly afford such a gift?
Not that he deserved it. Wesley simply couldn’t behave.
She’d find a way, being such a good parent.

The synopses didn’t reveal much, so I’m not sure exactly what drew me to HAVE to read this title, or what I expected –  but I didn’t expect this phenomenal story I just read by Daniel I. Russell. I admit, I’ve been jaded over the years, remember –  it’s fiction, it’s horror… what if Edward Lee wrote David Pelzer’s story? (OK, that was wrong, even for me… sorry). Nothing that gruesome, but it is a story that rubs your brain with an S.O.S. pad – and will leave a permanent scar.

THE STEPHENSON CASE centers around an overwhelmed,  young, single mother, Christine Stephenson, and her then ten year old son, Wesley.

Dr. Graham Burns wants to reveal the truth about what really happened inside the Stephenson house that led to the events on that Christmas day in 1987. BOTH sides of the story, the media falsehoods, and the eventual cover up. He has researched extensive reports from the case, and conducted his own interviews with people willing to talk about it.

Find RETARD on Amazon / Goodreads

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