Every evil in the bud is easily crushed; as it grows older, it becomes stronger. – Cicero, Philippicoe
Well, it’s October and for me, it’s basically a month-long reminder that’s it’s fun to be terrified, to watch as much horror movies as possible and to read as many horror books you can for the 31 days of October. Not that I’m terrified, at least not very easily lol.
So for my first review before Halloween, I decided to re-read for the third time, the Pine Deep trilogy. The first book in this trilogy from Jonathan Maberry is Ghost Road Blues. Within these pages, you’ll encounter ghosts, ghouls, human monsters and more. So get under that cozy blanket with your tea and a couple hundred pages that will be sure to truly horrify you.
This story begins weeks leading up to Halloween, an ancient evil arises to tear a small town from the inside out, the town is Pine Deep. Ironically it’s dubbed the most haunted town in America if they only knew. For Pine Deep hides a dark past and harbors a sleeping evil that even now is awakening, and the signs of violence and death it will spread is beyond what a small town of mostly farmers will once again experience.
This Stoker Award-winning novel gives us a fantastic flashback to a confrontation between good and evil. Good comes in the form of one Oren Morse (The Bone Man). The evil is Ubel Griswold but is he man, monster or both.
Pine Deep’s cornfields are suffering and failing while a serial killer is murdering townspeople left and right; until the Bone Man stops the murderer in a bloody and muddy fight that nearly finishes him, too. He thought he was doing the right thing by ending this monster, but some very corrupt residents didn’t think so. But as we all know evil is hard to kill, it just lies and waits in the dark cultivating its hatred toward those he believes have wronged him in some way.
There are some very bad men, human monsters headed to this town, their hearts and souls are as black as the evil waiting to exact its revenge. One of those monster’s Karl Ruger, is evil through and through, he’s one sick and disturbed asshole.
They were monsters all the same.
They blew into town on a Halloween wind, coming into Pine Deep along the black length of Extension Route A-32, whisking over Black Marsh Bridge and through the cornfields. They came in a black car that had bloodstains on the door handles and the single unblinking black eye of a bullet hole on the driver’s door. The monsters came rushing into town like a storm wind, pushing cold air before them and dragging darkness behind.
Another character Tow-Truck Eddie (yes that’s the name he goes by) is a religious zealot who hears whispers in his mind to kill “the beast”. The poor disturbed idiot thinks God is speaking to him. And there’s Vic Wingate, I frigging hate this guy, Maberry’s writing of him is so damn vivid you almost believe he’s real (of course in the real world there’s too many of him). You’ll see what I mean.
As Maberry tells us over and over again: Evil doesn’t die. “It waits, it changes and it comes back.”
We all know that there can’t be evil without the good right. Those special ones are Val, Crow, and Mike. These three and others will surprise you with their strength and courage. Because just as evil never dies, good can never be truly stopped either. Like evil, good will continue to wait and wait until it sees an opening, a small crack to breathe. Like evil, good has it’s followers, too.