Sunday, June 29, 2014
Carnies - by Martin Livings - "They're not what they seem to be. Dig deeper."
The Australian horror community is rich with talent. Martin Livings is a Perth-based writer who has had over sixty short stories in a variety of magazines and anthologies. Carnies is his first full-length novel, first published several years ago, it was nominated for both the Aurealis and Ditmar awards. Carnies is now available as an e-book from Cohesion Press.
The story begins with an incident at the Tillbrook Pub where a biker gang has a run-in with three men who walk into the bar. You can't say they weren't warned, as the barmaid tells them, "'You...' she stammered, you shouldn't chase those folk....' She sought the right word for a moment. 'They're not...right.'"
Paul and David Hampden are brothers. David works for a paper, but is no longer a big deal. He's been reduced to puff pieces for the weekend magazine. Paul is currently unemployed, but is actually a pretty good photographer. David offers his brother a job taking pictures at a carnival no one's ever heard of and off they go. What they find is darker than they could ever imagine.
Nothing is unimportant in this story. I really enjoyed the way Martin would take some little tidbit from earlier in the work and then drop in a follow-up with little or no fanfare. As a reader, I like to experience that sense of discovery.
Carnies is a good read and is available now, both in paperback and e-book formats, through Amazon.com.