Whew! What a roller-coaster ride of a read. Tim Waggoner’s EAT THE NIGHT (DarkFuse) is by far the weirdest novel I have come across this year. Not that it’s a bad thing. Au contraire. It has originality, a strong narrative, a fast-paced execution, and most importantly: a pulpy flavor to it that makes the time spent reading this effort all the more worthwhile. It is a rather short novel, under 200 pages, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
The plot is sort of hard to define. Without saying too much, it involves a crazed long ago famed guru/singer who comes back from the dead to haunt a woman who has a haunting past of her own. When she discovers—after having had a bitch of a nightmare—a hidden basement in her newly-acquired house, her life as she knows it is under assault. It’s only when she pairs up with this antacid chewer agent of a secret organization called Maintenance (think MEN IN BLACK) that she’s able to merge past and present and confront evil head-on.
I know, I know. Written this way scarcely does the novel justice but trust me on this. If you dig crazy imageries, like someone being forced-fed skin from peeled-off faces or witnessing a decapitated head talk its head off (yes, I went there), you’ll have plenty to enjoy. My personal fave moment rather involves a mail carrier who turns into a bug and attacks a road vehicle. Always been a sucker for big threatening creatures in books or in films. Speaking of the latter, EAT THE NIGHT reminds me of those cool independent movies that become surprise hits from word-of-mouth advertising. I can easily see this one hitting the big or small screen, depending who gets interested in it. Personally, I would see it in theaters. We need some good-old fashioned B-grade films adapted from succulent novels such as EAT THE NIGHT. It’s a no-brainer, really.
This is the second title that I have read from Waggoner, the first one being LIKE-DEATH from the now defunct Leisure line. Having had enjoyed EAT THE NIGHT so much makes me wonder what I have been missing for the last decade or so. Pick this one up and see exactly what I’m talking about.
Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the chance to read this novel in exchange for an honest review.
Until next post—Martin