Don't mess with a country boy's dog. That is the lesson to be learned here. This was a good short read that is hard to put down. I finished it in one evening. It is listed as horror in some groups. I don't see it. I think it was a good thriller but there was no horror about it.
This is a good story...I read this book in one day. I like the way Jack Ketchum writes and I can identify with his characters....really good read.
After reading Off Season, I was pleasantly surprised to read a good story about a man who loses his dog to an act of plain meanness.
It all started with a simple act of brutality. Three boys shot and killed an old man's dog. No reason, just plain meanness. But the dog was the best thing in the old man's world, and he wasn't about to let it pass. He wanted justice, and he'd make sure the kids paid for what they did, even if it cost him his life. They picked the wrong old man to mess with. And as the fury and violence escalate, they're about to learn that...the hard way.
After reading Off Season, I was expecting the gore beyond gore, but fortunately Ketchum does lay off it and go for writing a good story about a man and the loss of his dog. Short and I could not put it down til it was done!!
Ketchum's books are very good and don't deal with supernatural, just humans being cruel to each other. The novella at the end "The Passenger" was very good.
Great, suspenseful writing, especially the novella at the back of the book!
This was a good book. Good, but not great. First of all, it's not horror. It's suspense. The story was realistic and believable, however. The second story, The Passenger, was more like what I would expect from J. Ketchum. Violent and gory, with a lot of weird characters...too weird, in fact. The female antagonist was so weird that she wasn't even believable. This was not my favorite book of J. Ketchum's.
Avery is a 67 year old veteran of the Korean War and a widow. Red is his dog and faithful companion. His wife bought him when he was a puppy for Avery and is one of the last links to his deceased wife. While fishing in a rural Maine stream one afternoon, he's confronted by three spoiled punk teenagers with a shotgun. In an attempt to rob Avery, they are enraged to learn he only has a few dollars in his wallet all the way back in his parked truck. They then turn the shotgun on the dog instead. As they walk away laughing for murdering his dog, Avery is distraught at this senseless act of violence. He seeks out redemption. What he finds is that no one is able to help him. Not the police. Not his lawyer. Not the press. A dog is considered property, not a life, and Avery is on his own.
In a story of revenge that pits the good old boy with good old fashioned values against a rich, shameless father that protects his spoiled punk kids with his bank account and connections in high places, you really feel for Avery. His losses from the past and present provide a very sympathetic underdog that is only trying to get the family to own up to what they've done and make things right. Your heart bleeds as you see how the deck is continually stacked against him.
This was my first Ketchum story and it's hard not to think of Stephen King's work when you're reading a macabre story set in rural Maine. Ketchum, however, has his own style of delivery that is descriptive while not attempting to be a carbon copy of Maine's more famous horror author. There were a couple of instances in the story where descriptions were muddled, but it wasn't enough to make the tale less enjoyable. Anyone that has soft heart for a loyal canine will have their blood pressure rise 40 points after the first chapter. Four stars.
Two part book, in the first section, "Red" Ketchum shows you the inhumanity of men! A well told story with no gore, unlike Ketchum. In "The Passenger". Ketchum shoes you he hasn't changed his style, lots of gore and violence! A typical Ketchum tale!
Who's the scariest writer around, Laymon, Lee, King, Koontz, not a contest! Ketchum wins by a wide margin.
This is an interesting read and I wasn't able to put down. Its godd from beginning to end. Loved it!
A snotty rich kid picks on the wrong old man to mess with.
A good Ketchum story. But like most of his work, kind of sick.
Good story. A man with so much love for his pet, that he had to seek some form of justice.
this was my first ketchum read and i must say i loved it. almost from the first paragraph you have such a good feel for the charactors. great book. excellent aurthor.
it all started with a brutal act . the killing of his dog. just for meanness. but the boys picked the wrong man to pick on. was a good book.
An over-the-top revenge adventure!
This is one of Richard Laymon's best books. I have read eight of his books and still have enjoyed this book the most. He stayed close to the storyline and it was believable. You could relate to the action of its characters and their wasn't a lot of sex. This book was truly an enjoyable read. I highly recommend this book.