“There is but one truely serious psychological problem – and that is suicide.”
~ Albert Camus
The life of a small town…
The death of a small town…
Gethsemane was a small rural town. As small rural towns went it was a sleepy little burg. It woke up with the sun. It went to bed with the moon. The fields had been planted, and now the farmers watched them grow.
And the teenagers who normally ran rampant about the town – fucking, drinking, and vandalizing away the days – were afraid to leave their houses.
The teenagers in Gethsemane are dying.
When the news and papers finally pick up the story, they call it ‘The Suicide Virus’, but two residents of this town, Stephen & Elise, know differently. This is no virus.
But, let us not get ahead of ourselves here. THE SORROW KING is not the first thing I’ve read by Anderson Prunty, although it is the best so far. When I picked up the others, it was before I knew what Bizarro Fiction was, before I knew Prunty’s name. Knowing this now, I fully intend to go back and re-read my copy of Jack and Mr. Grin, and dive into the (at least) five other titles I already own.
Prunty does an excellent job with characterization. I got to know the main players well, Steven & Elise, Steven’s dad – Conner, Drifter Ken…(I would like more on this character – a SS maybe? There’s another story in Ken Blanchard.) You can get a feel of each character, without ever getting the feeling of TMI.
Alright. That’s way more than I’ve ever said on that. The story just grabs you in the first chapter, and never let up. I never had a moment of wanting to stop reading, and when I had to… I’d start again asap. This wasn’t one that just sat there like – ‘meh. whenever.’ It’s dark. Surreal.
It’s uncomfortable in spots. Capturing the teenaged mind all too vividly, it drags you through those disheartening emotions. Those days when every trouble is multiplied x100. There are some graphic sexual pieces. But, your not a prude. Not if your reading my reviews. They may be cringe worthy if you remember their ages, I do know a lot Steven’s sexual fantasies now. Hmm.
Back to the story.
The teenagers in Gethsemane (Ohio) are dropping like flies. Dying in apparent suicides. Steve knows better, he feels it, he’s writing about it in his sleep, but how can he stop it? Elise knows better, too. But, she believes she might be part of the problem.
Conner, desperately trying to make certain his son doesn’t become a statistic, starts looking for answers, too. The story he hears from the town’s Drifter is one of ghosts and poisoned towns.
Behind it all, is the Sorrow King. The Jackthief. And he’s growing stronger each day.
Did that grab ya? How ’bout this… “There are no happy endings in Hell”.
The something of Anderson Prunty
And click on the links at the beginning to get your copy.