Tim Niland's Reviews > Last Days

Last Days by Brian Evenson
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's review
Oct 05, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: 2010-reads

Kline is a detective, who is badly injured while in pursuit of a criminal. He loses a hand in the process and becomes known to a fringe religious sect who insist that he investigate a supposed murder that has taken place in their compound. What he finds is a whole religious encampment who literally cut off the limb that offends them, gaining status within the sect on the basis of the number of amputations one has had. Kline barely escapes (with a few less parts than when he entered) only to fall into the hands of a rival faction who think that Kline might literally be the messiah and that the only way he can be free is to go back and kill all of the remaining members of the first group... If this sounds like a B-movie splatterfest, well yes, it is. But it also a darkly funny mashup of horror fiction, the noir crime novel and deep satire about religious extremism. Kline stumbles about as if in a fever dream, never knowing what is real and what is imagined and the reader follows along blindly in his wake, cringing at the gore but fascinated at the story that is unfolding. Imagine a combination of Franz Kafka and Philip K. Dick, written by Joe R. Lansdale. Not for everyone by a long shot, but those who read it will never forget it.
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