Ahoy there mateys! I had never read anything by this author but the idea of a mannequin coming to life is always fun. Wasn’t there an 80s movie about a mannequin coming to life in a department store? I believe that was a comedy and this one was a horror. I was excited but this novella ended up being just an okay read.
The beginning of the novella was excellent. I loved the premise of a prank going wrong. I loved how the mannequin comes to life. I loved the unreliable narrator who is trying to save the town and happens to be going insane because of it. How Sawyer tries to save the world was both funny and horrible. I was completely enthralled for a bit. Had the book stayed in this vein it could have been a favorite.
Unfortunately, the climax and ending were not to me taste. The story kinda took a sharp random turn that didn’t really fit with the rest of the plot. And some of the revelations were kinda random and silly. I don’t mind ambiguous endings but this one just seemed really off. That said, it was short and fun and I have no regrets. Not sure if I will read any of the author’s other works though. Arrr!
Matey Mogsy had a great review of this one in audio book format and said:
In my very limited experience with the author, I can already tell he loves his ambiguous stories, blurring the lines between reality and the supernatural. Throughout this entire tale, you can never really trust what you’re seeing or hearing through Sawyer’s eyes because as you’ve probably guessed, he’s as unreliable as they come. The writing also reflects his frame of mind, presented in an almost stream of consciousness flood of memories, thoughts and observations. It likely would have been a struggle reading this book in print, but fortunately the style wasn’t as much of an obstacle with the audio format.
Side note: I had no problems with the print version. Arrr!
Goodreads has this to say about the novella:
Stephen Graham Jones returns with Night of the Mannequins, a contemporary horror story where a teen prank goes very wrong and all hell breaks loose: is there a supernatural cause, a psychopath on the loose, or both?
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