Jack and Mr. Grin by Andersen Prunty
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Book Info: Genre: Bizarro
Reading Level: Adult
Recommended for: Fans of mystery/thrillers with paranormal twist, bizarro
Trigger Warnings: Violence against women, including sexual assault
Disclosure: I picked up this book from Amazon on a free promotion. All opinions are my own.
Synopsis: Jack Orange is a twenty-something guy who works at a place called The Tent packing dirt in boxes and shipping them off to exotic, unheard-of locales. He thinks about his girlfriend, Gina Black, and the ring he hopes to surprise her with. But when he returns home one day, Gina isn’t there. He receives a strange call from a man who sounds like he is smiling—Mr. Grin. He says he has Gina. He gives Jack twenty- four hours to find her.
What follows is Jack’s bizarre journey through an increasingly warped and surreal landscape where an otherworldy force burns brands into those he comes in contact with, trains appear out of thin air, rooms turn themselves inside out and computers are powered by birds. And if he does find Gina, how will he ever survive a grueling battle to the death with Mr. Grin?
My Thoughts: By the time I picked up this e-book on Amazon under a KDP promotion, I was just grabbing anything by this author I could find, since I found I quite enjoyed his work.
This one is quite different from the previous books I’ve read. Whereas the previous books I read tended toward horror or urban fantasy, this one is more along the lines of a thriller, albeit with supernatural aspects.
One thing I have found that I really appreciate about Andersen Prunty is his gift of describing things so perfectly. Take this description of a blandly “corporate” America:
“It looked like every highway exit area on every interstate in America, lined with chain hotels, chain restaurants and chain gas stations. Like the developers had dropped their pants and shat out what every mid-size city in America had.”
The reason I’ve rated this four stars is not due to any deficiency in the writing, but I rate based upon my enjoyment and I didn’t enjoy this one quite as much as I did the last two – I think it’s because this just didn’t have the same level of dark humor as Satanic Summer and My Fake War. However, it is a well-written and entertaining book, and I think fans of bizarro literature, as well as those who enjoy mystery/thrillers with a paranormal bent will enjoy this book.
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