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#Bookreview #RBRT Flesh by Dylan J. Morgan (@dylanjmorgan) Horror, twists and turns and a small-town legend that’s anything but… #Tuesdaybookblog

Hi all:

I already told you last week I was reading a lot these days, and today I bring you another review, this one of a book I read as part of Rosie’s Book Review Team. It’s a great privilege to form part of such wonderful team of people. And today, I bring you a scary one…

Flesh by Dylan J. Morgan
Flesh by Dylan J. Morgan

First, the description:

It feeds. It grows. The small town of Vacant harbors a secret so terrifying that the local lawmen will do anything to keep it hidden—including murder. Something sinister stalks the surrounding woods, a horrifying creature thought to be only a mystical legend. It hunts at night, killing with ravenous voracity. Deputies Carson Manning and Kyle Brady are the harvesters: they find the victims, tie them to the baiting post. Sheriff Andrew Keller and Deputy Matthew Nielsen are the cleaners: they dispose of the corpses. But when Vacant’s townsfolk take matters into their own hands, nothing can contain the slaughter. The deadly entity isn’t the only menace Sheriff Keller has to face. He has his own dark secret, a past he tries to hide behind frequent alcohol binges. Now that past has come back to haunt him and will throw him headlong into a traumatic situation that could mean life or death for him and those he holds dear.

And now, my review:

Flesh by Dylan J. Morgan  Horror, twists and turns and a small-town legend that’s anything but…

I am reviewing Flesh as part of Rosie’s Book Review Team and I’ve received a complimentary copy of the novel in exchange for an unbiased review.

I love horror. Books, movies, series… I’d read very good reviews of Dylan J. Morgan’s books and when I saw one of his books come up for review at Rosie’s team I decided to take the chance and read it.

You probably have read (and/or watched, if you’re interested in the genre) similar stories. Small town, something in the woods is killing people. The something might vary from book to book. Here the small town is not the wholesome small-town of cosy diners and picket fences, but rather the strange world of Blue Velvet (well, perhaps weird in a different way, a corrupt place full of drug-addicts, alcoholics, mad preachers, power-crazy mayors, and people prepared to do anything to keep themselves safe, even if it means others have to suffer). And the story is written in such a way that we don’t really know what we think we know, or rather, we don’t realise what we know until very close to the end. At least for me, the novel was full of surprises.

The novel is told in the third person, from quite a few of the characters’ points of view, the main characters. None of them, with the exception of Miranda, but she hardly appears in the first part of the book, are easy to connect with or sympathetic. The book opens with one of the character’s (although we are not told many things about her) extreme violence and a description of butchery that, being a doctor, I must confess had me wondering if some of the things were anatomically possible… As we see things from the character’s mind’s eye, the reading can be quite uncomfortable. On the other hand, at least for me, it didn’t work at the level of some scenes of extreme violence in Tarantino’s movies, for instance, when you might find yourself joining in and siding with the perpetrator. But perhaps that’s a matter of personal taste. The rest of the main characters are deeply flawed, addicted to alcohol, drugs, and egotistical. Matthew, newly joined deputy sheriff seems too good to be true, other than for his sexual relationship with a woman that also seems to break the rules (sex during work at the police station for instance), but until more than fifty per cent of the book has gone we don’t have much of a hero to root for. And then, things change. And how. (Also some new characters appear that add to the interest, but the biggest surprise is how the ones we knew already change.  Or we realise we didn’t know them quite as well as we thought.)

I’m not overtly fond of descriptions and the book is full of them, be how the characters are feeling (hangover, highs of drugs, sex, hot and sweaty…), clothes, food, drinks… Although well-written, I felt due to this the first half of the novel moves at a slow-steady pace, whilst the last half speeds up.

As you’ve probably noticed from what I’ve said, I thoroughly enjoyed the second half of the book, where you feel much more invested and engaged with the characters and things get much more personal, not only for us but for some of the protagonists. It is a good way of rising expectations and interest, although there is always the risk that some readers might not follow the writer, but in this case it’s well-worth the patience. I won’t go into a lot of detail not to spoil the reading experience, but as I mentioned, it took me quite a while to work out the connections and the ins and outs of the plot. It’s very cleverly done.

Overall, would I recommend this book? Yes, if you love horror, and you like descriptive writing, both of horrific scenes and in general (there’s also a fairly explicit sex scene, be warned), and want to be taken by surprise (even shocked). And, a word of warning, whatever you think of the beginning, keep reading, because the second half of the book is fantastic.

Link:

http://amzn.to/1N67DLB

If you want to check directly the preview, here it is:

Thanks so much to Rosie and to the author for this opportunity, thanks to you all for reading, and don’t forget to like, share, comment, CLICK, and of course, to REVIEW!

By OlgaNunez

I was born in Barcelona and after living in the UK for many years have now returned home. I teach English, volunteer at Sants 3 Ràdio, a local radio station, I'm a writer, translator (English-Spanish and vice-versa) and I'm a medical doctor and worked in Forensic Psychiatry many years. I also have a BA and a PhD in American Literature and Film, and a Masters in Criminology. I've always loved books and apart from writing them I review them often.
I write a bit of everything, check my books for more information and my about page for links.
My blog is bilingual, English and Spanish.

11 replies on “#Bookreview #RBRT Flesh by Dylan J. Morgan (@dylanjmorgan) Horror, twists and turns and a small-town legend that’s anything but… #Tuesdaybookblog”

Thanks, Rosie. Yes, it is. I wouldn’t dare to recommend it people who don’t enjoy the genre, though. 😉

You’ve given us another well done review, Olga.
What you said about it being difficult to connect with the characters in the first half, and about the main character not having much page-time in the first half — but improving in the second half would help me decide if I were on the fence.
Huge hugs to you my friend.

Thanks, Teagan. It’s one of these characters that there’s not much to root for to begin with, but eventually becomes the hero… Mind you, you need to love your horror. It’s not one of the easy ones.

Wow! I’m excited about this book, Olga! It’s right up my alley. You know I too love the Horror genre and this book intrigues me. I also enjoy books that are intricate with their plot. Great review! Thank you. 😀 xx

Thanks, Vashti. It’s very cleverly written indeed and I think you’ll enjoy it for sure (just keep going!). 😉

Reminiscent of the ‘glory days’ of Stephen King, Olga. I wish Dylan well, and hope that sales are as good as your review!
Best wishes, Pete. x

Thanks, Pete. I think lovers of the genre definitely have taken to him. And I suspect it won’t be the last of his horror novels I’ll read. Considering how much I like the genre I don’t ready that many books in it, but then I enjoy many different books. I hope you’re feeling better. 🙂

So glad you liked this, I didn’t know I liked horror until I read it! I thoroughly recommend The Dead Lands, it’s his best. 🙂

Thanks, Terry. I’m not sure why (hey, I’m a psychiatrist but not an analyst, so I won’t analyse myself…) I’ve always loved horror although for some reason I seem to read far less of it these days. I’m sure I’ll be reading quite a few of his books and I’m putting the Dead Lands on my list. (I was travelling and read it almost in one sitting. It made the journey go faster, and my heart too!) 🙂

#RBRT The Dead Lands (A Post-Apocalyptic Thriller. The Dead Lands #1) by Dylan J. Morgan (@dylanjmorgan). A futuristic nightmare, where you can’t trust anybody. #TuesdayBookBlog – authortranslatorOlgasays:

[…] recently read and reviewed another one of Dylan Morgan’s novels Flesh (see here), a horror novel, and I was impressed by the book. Another member of the review team (hi, Terry!) […]

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