J.F. Gonzalez and Mark Williams
Deadite Press / 280 pages / (April 13, 2011)
Sometimes, the chilling possibilities of dark realism get just a touch too frightening. The vampires, werewolves, and black magic in the shadows of dark fantasy multiply too rapidly to keep pace with. Don’t you just feel like a good, old-fashioned, mutant monster story? One of those Saturday afternoon creature features that got you interested in this genre in the first place? Sounds like you are ready for Clickers.
Remember though, the rules are different when you’re talking giant frogs, Buick-sized bugs, and various and sundry blobs; there are going to be some defects, some glaring errors, and much that’s impossible to swallow. That’s part of the fun.
Rick Sychek is living the writer’s dream. His horror novels have started to hit it big. He’s got a six-figure deal for more of the same. Unfortunately, he’s also facing the scare of writers’ block. More unfortunate still, he’s just picked the absolute worst place on Earth to roll-start the creative process. Okay, he actually picked the right town at the exact wrong time.
From the dramatic and grisly prologue, it’s obvious that something or lots of somethings from the depths of the Atlantic are coming ashore. Whether any living thing in the town will survive the attack gets less likely with every passing minute.
Remember the Monster Movie Rule: Don’t get too attached to any of the characters. That’s going to be tough advice to follow, because Gonzalez and Williams know how to take a name and a face from a first meeting and add subtle and telling details to build a full person. Much of the information plants itself in your brain before you realise you’ve even processed it. Kind of like how you get to know real people.
That doesn’t mean you’re going to like everyone you meet in Clickers — not all the villains are coming out of the waves.
Strong character development isn’t the only thing to look forward to in this novel. The setting is small-town charming. The terrain changes with every point on the compass. The sea takes on a menacing personality of its own. And the monsters have that unstoppable quality all mutants need.
‘ll leave it up to you to decide if the extreme gore and non-stop violence are to your taste, or not. Hard to say if you’ll look forward to that aspect…
If you’ve got a buffet of junk food ready to go, if you’ve got a raging thunderstorm outside, and you can get a few hours to yourself, you got the makings of your own Saturday matinee madness.