cover image This Is Where It Gets Interesting: Stories

This Is Where It Gets Interesting: Stories

John H. Matthews. Six Slug Books, $13.99 paper (202p) ISBN 978-0-615-64475-2

Some stories in Matthews's entertaining collection are wacky and imbued with dark humor, while others are heartwarming examinations of humanity. Still others focus on characters that could be taken straight from the pages of comic books. In "Stormbringer," a young man awakens to discover he's been transformed into a giant Norse warrior. "Hero" is about a character named Dr. Mayhem who sets about to terrorize America. In "Bullets Have No Effect," a seemingly immortal death row inmate defies the state's attempts to put him to death. Visiting spirits and ghosts inhabit many of these stories and often serve as mediums for life-affirming messages to the living. The strongest stories are those that are less quirky. "The Wall" is an examination of modern-day class segregation, gated communities, and a suspect security apparatus. And "Mercurochrome"%E2%80%94a haunting story set in a small neighborhood below a section of highway that is the site of many deadly accidents%E2%80%94explores human reactions to tragedy. Matthews's stories are more charming than affecting, but they'll certainly appeal to anyone looking for humorous, fun reading.