Jonathan Hutchins's Reviews > Pandaemonium

Pandaemonium by Christopher Brookmyre
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Apr 12, 12

Read from March 04 to 06, 2012

The audacious yet lovely Christopher Brookmyre does it again. A bunch of teenagers from a Glasgow school are taken to a remote lodge as post-trauma therapy after a murder/suicide at the school, while scientists, the military and church functionaries are very carefully tangling with anomaly-spawned entities deep below the same mountain: entities with pointy teeth, horns, and forked tails. Brookmyre's ear and eye for teenage stuff is as fine as in 'A Tale Etched in Blood and Hard Black Pencil', while his devilishly playful theological speculations spirit the reader into a hall of mirrors. Demons really exist, therefore it would be a stunning coup for the Church to reveal them; but perhaps they are only beings from another dimension, in which case they need to be suppressed for fear of fuelling belief that the Church's edifice of Hell is a fraud; but then maybe that is all part of the real Satan's real plan to discredit the Church?! Never mind: wait until the mad scientist releases the captive demons and watch the carnage really begin. And there is bagfuls of zestful carnage, gleefully referencing all the tropes of classic slasher/horror; the pious torn apart, the naughty shaggers dismembered, the good guy skewered. Sex'n'death and 'Dog Soldiers' thrown in, or was it only the Scottish setting which suggested that to my mind? And the ending is pure Evil Dead 2. Brilliant Brookmyre.
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