You know Jimbo, and Gonzo, and Frannie, and Liz… Oh, you don’t? Really? Where have you been? They are, like soooo the new Scooby-Doo, just for the grown-ups. And there’s Brett too, but he worked with the rhythm of the ripoff song about as well as Liz.
Here’s the Road Ghosts premise in a nutshell: there’s a group of twenty-somethings, and the older “Uncle” Gonzo, with his van, “Soccer Mom.” Someone of the bunch gets in a spot of paranormal trouble. Then, it takes the witt, wisdom, beer, and accidents of everyone else they know to get them out of it.
In this second book, we can blame Brett and Liz. They were chasing a chupacabra. They were chasing a chupacabra in Tennessee.
Yep, our heroes were very bright.
To complicate matters, Liz’s ex was one campsite over, and he was after the same critter. Only, it wasn’t a “critter” – not if you want to be technical. It certainly wasn’t a chupacabra.
Now, let’s avoid spoilers. That means you have to actually read the book to find out who betrayed whom, what the “it” was in the woods, and why demonic possession came into the mess. With Liz’s webcam on all of the time, keeping secrets is hard; oh-so hard, and the Road Ghosts crew had much to hide in SINKING DOWN.
In the first review I did at Eric Garrison’s request, I applauded him for his initial few pages. In FOUR ‘TIL LATE, he masterfully introduced his characters, describing their personalities, motivations, and physical traits in the reunion scene between the friends next to “Soccer Mom.” This book didn’t begin so fortuitously. Partly, it’s that the book opens with a girl-boy match-up, not the boy-boy road trip feel from before. Still, none of the group met their detail potential. I think it’s that Garrison expected the reader to have read the first book and be familiar with his characters, but, now-a-days, many readers grab the book that’s on sale in a series first, not necessarily the first book of the series.
Did Garrison write another jumbled plot? Yes and no. The plot is more clear. It was certainly better planned. The last portion is the best, because the characters can play off of each other, and that moves the story along, making the prose fun and snappy. It’s that first section again- that chupacabra section. It’s slow and weighty. My advice is to buy the book anyway, get passed the woods portion of the program, and settle in for a sweet deal of a funny horror book.
Thanks, Eric, for the ARC. I love the guys and their banter. Keep up the good work!
Complete your Road Ghosts collection by sampling these WOTN reviews:
Eric Garrison is active in the writing community in Indianapolis, Indiana. He lives in the Circle City with his wife, step-daughter, and a cabal of cats. He also enjoys gaming, home brewing beer, and finding innovative uses for duct tape.
Series: Road Ghosts #2
Publisher: Seventh Star Press
Pub. Date: December 17, 2013