Weather this hot demands the cool balm of a book, and do I have one for you.
The Book of Accidents is the latest horror-epic from Chuck Wendig – the seeming literary successor to King, Straub, McCammon and Barker. Wendig’s books take you in their embrace and say “you’re mine now” or maybe “we all float down here.” Here, in this case, being a mineshaft in the rural vacancy of Pennsylvania.
There is plenty of hype around The Book of Accidents and I’m delighted to say it’s all earned. This is quite simply the kind of big, bombastic storytelling you don’t get much of anymore, a steak-and-lobster-with-ice-cream for after sort of novel that fills you up and leaves you satisfied.
The book is so big, and the ideas so grand, that Chuck and I end up forgetting to talk much about the actual story. Instead we discuss what it has to say about society – good and bad – about kindness, and love and the comfort of horror that we all-too often ignore in favour of the viscera. In short, it’s a wholesome conversation about a wholesome book, about a very unwholesome scenario.
Oh – and Chuck tells us all about the very real haunted house that inspired it. A house he happens to have grown up in.
The Book of Accidents was published by Del Rey on 20th July.
Other books mentioned in the show include:
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Thanks to Adrian Flounders for graphic design.