Sunday, June 15, 2014

Reading Justn Hamelin's "The Darkest Corner".


By - Steve Mezo

The world is getting to know Author Justin Hamelin as this. 

But I know him as this

A fellow Monster Kid that still loves monsters and dark rides just as much as the first time we discovered them many many years ago.

And recently he's become a published author with
 "The Darkest Corner"
with illustrations by Kevin Spencer.


Justin had sent me a autographed copy to read and had asked me to review it here. But he made a stipulation to be completely honest and brutal. And the only thing I could think of was the final words of the movie Fanboys "But what if it sucks?"

It's hard enough being a entertainer, but even harder having friends that are also entertainers and ask you to critique their work. Some like myself were taught by Drill Instructors for teachers or mentors and tell you straight up "I'm giving you a thick skin to handle criticism, because when you're out in the real world someone paying you thousands will tear you a new one if your work didn't meet their expectations."  
But a lot of people weren't and they can take a "I really wasn't crazy about it" like a shotgun blast to the face...

And so far three books that I've been asked to review by the author's "Snuff" by Adam Huber Eric Enck, "Vicious Dogs Attack me in Sleepless Nights of Summer" by Scott Schiaffo and "Chat" by E.L. Dawson were great reads and now I can add a fourth to that list. 

I had left "The Darkest Corner" at my mom's place so she could read it first. Hey she is the one that got me into monsters and tought me to read by the time I was four so don't judge!
And she had the same opinion I did of "The Darkest Corner". 

But first let me do yet another lead in... 

Okay my mother and I kind of figured out the twist before the end of the short stories compiled. Is this a bad thing? Absolutely not if you look at it this way. 
You go to a magic show and the illusionist performs "Sawing a lady in half". Now if you've seen quite a few magic shows or seen a secrets revealed special you know how it's done or the routine of it. But if the Illusionist is a real showman you tell that part of your brain to shut up and let yourself be drawn into the entertainment.

Or if you watch the master Ray Harryhausen's movies. You know the monster is a latex model with a metal armature that was filmed frame by frame. But you'll watch Jason and the Argonauts and Sinbad sword fight with those Skeleton Warriors every time with that same huge smile on your face.

And that's how it was reading Justin Hamelin's "The Darkest Corner". Even though you could piece together the reveal you don't care because the ride through the story was just that good.
You can see his influence by Stephen King where he puts you in a young couples apartment or a dark basement. 
And the pacing along with the length of the stories kept you going like any favorite anthology. 

I have to apologize for not giving a description of every story (Nine in all) but I want everyone to buy a copy and enjoy it with a fresh enjoyment of them.

And I want to thank Justin Hamelin along with the four other authors I had mentioned for being so kind with trusting me to type about their works in my own bathroom stall styled scribblings.  

Oh and before I forget I will be retyping a lost review of Adam Hubert and Eric Enck's book "SNUFF". It'll be a pretty intresting read because it came from a meeting on Myspace a long time ago and how I became part of that book in some ways.