John Boden is yet another writer I wish more people were aware of. Whilst his output is infrequent, the quality of the writing is never in doubt and so it continues with his latest story, Spungunion. Spungunion is a fantastic, weird novella, one I thoroughly enjoyed my time spent in this place rife with strange characters. The word Spungunion itself is strange though when you read what it means I’m sure you’ll agree it fits perfectly with the story.
Deke Larch’s story of revenge takes the reader on a journey through odd destinations that are filled with equally odd characters. What begins as a straightforward tale of loss, grief and murder soon becomes a sort of weird road trip as Deke seeks out the person responsible for his wife’s brutal murder.
John’s writing is creative, passionate and moving. Spungunion is quite simply a superb story full of heart. During the book, we get little snippets from Deke and Lucille’s past. These add another emotional layer to the story. Sometimes, flashbacks can interrupt the flow of a story but not so here. We get a real sense of the special bond these two shared and it makes you invest in Deke’s quest for clarity and vengeance. Whilst very different, Spungunion actually reminded me a little of Neil Gaiman’s American Gods.
I love everything about this story, I only wish it was longer. Certain characters had a fantastic mystique about them and I felt there was much to be explored, though I certainly didn’t feel cheated by its novella length. Sometimes it is good when the reader is left wanting more. If you enjoy weird fiction and are looking for a new author to check out, John Boden’s Spungunion is well worth your time and your coin.
4.5/5 greasy spoons from the Grim Reader.
Pick up a copy from here.