Reed Alexander's Horror Review of 'The Second Shred' (2019) by DLW, Published Through MHP
Where the fuck am I?!?
DLW never fails to grab me by the balls and drag me kicking and screaming though her writing. I'm never sure if she's intentionally fucking with the audience, or if her writing is just naturally chaotic/evil and reading it causes insanity.
Recently in an interview with Madness Heart Radio, DLW confessed that if a moment in her writing doesn't excite or intrigue, it gets cut. You can hear that interview by clicking the following link.
Here's the thing, while this certainly makes for an interesting read, maybe just a liiiiiittle more exposition? The one thing I can say is that I wasn't bored and, like The First Shred, I couldn't put the fucking thing down. Though, it should be noted, The Second Shred is a lot more coherent and seems to flow more naturally. DLW shows clear improvement on her chaotic/evil style, and that's good for my sanity. I only have so much fucking sanity left!
Still, the story left me feeling like Jay at the end of Dogma...
Nothing has changed about my opinions of the characters, the setting, or the overarching story. It's beautifully dark and gruesome, not to mention really greedily violent. If I could add any new commentary, I'd say DLW is getting a better hang of subtly and suspense.
Again, I give her my full recommendation for The Second Shred, and if you haven't read The First Shred yet, I absolutely recommend that you do.Reed Alexander's Horror Review of 'The First Shred'
Jesus fucking Christ! I understand that each scene is designed to be as provocative as possible, and later scenes are designed to explain those scene while still remaining provocative, however, I feel like I need a fucking flow chart of each charter and their goddamn timeline to keep everything straight.
It's almost like all this shit was written as a series of flash fictions and loosely strung together. The only reason I have any idea who the narrator is is because the last book was basically building him up to be the monster hunter he is now. Everything hearkens back to his encounter with the Faelie which left the mark on his hand, and the girl with the special healing powers who prevented him from dying of a degenerative condition caused by toxic exposure.
So... The Fetcher captures Ayke's brother and the narrator before part one? And that's happening roughly at the same time as part two, about a day or so before? So we're going backwards in time? The subtle flashbacks of Ayke and her two brothers occur during those two parts and are apparently happen before that. So, the Fetcher thinks the narrator has already killed Tribe. Even though these events predate part one which is the narrator hunting Tribe. One thing we know for certain, the narrator survives his encounter with The Fetcher. I mean, he'd have to in order to get to part one of this book.
Something else is more important here though. Ayke has some kind of important relationship to Tribe. She absolutely must. Her strange fascination with wooden splinters kept coming up throughout part two, and all of that is a call back to part one when this unnamed little girl explodes, shooting out jagged wooden splinters.
So here's a weird circle jerk; the exploding girl, Tribe, and Ayke are all linked somehow. Narrator seems to think the little girl is protecting Tribe, then she explodes into splinters, nearly killing the narrator. Ayke had some sort of obsession with wooden splinters and we also know that Ayke is part Faelie, meaning she has magic powers. I'm thinking the exploding girl from part one is Ayke? Or maybe we're supposed to think that's what happened to her... But what the fuck is her connection to Tribe, and why the fuck did The Fetcher already think narrator killed Tribe?! Is it possible that Ayke is Tribe?
Don't even get me started on how the fuck any of this connects to the first book. While I think part three explains why narrator is no longer with anyone from the first book, he's the only thing that seems to connect it. Which means I need to go back and read the first book again.
You know what? I'm almost certain DLW is doing this shit on purpose.
Friends, Fans, look forward to more of the chaotic/evil writer DLW because this is only second of a three part series.