The bottom line is that I should be reading more Jeffrey Ford. Just a fantastic writer.
This is one of those novellas I’ve been meaning to read. I’ve always loved Jeffrey Ford’s work and so it’s a crime I haven’t already devoured The Twilight Pariah.
I’ve done myself a disservice not having read more Jeffrey Ford. Just look at the laconic but cheeky tone of the opening paragraph of the novella:
The plot goes something like this: Three college students on vacation, Maggie, Russell and Henry, decide to excavate the shithouse (or outhouse as it’s crudely referred to in the novella) of a run-down, dilapidated mansion just outside of town. Maggie, whose hare-brained idea this is, believes they might find something valuable in the dirt and ossified shit of the people who once lived in the mansion. What they dig-up is less gold and jewels and more a child’s skeleton – a young boy – with horns sprouting from the skull. Things get decidedly bug-fuck crazy after that.
I appreciate an author who tactfully uses the word jizz:
The Gist Of It
That was marvellously entertaining. Slick writing, beautifully paced, peopled with sympathetic characters and, at times, quite creepy. I won’t spoil it here but the source of the supernatural menace, while not an ‘oh gosh wow’ moment, is suitably different to your run of the mill haunting or demon. Most of all Ford is a natural story-teller clearly having a shit load of fun unfurling his shaggy dog tale. Highly recommended.