Book Review: The Blue World by Robert McCammon

10 Jul

If you haven’t checked out the incredible works of Robert McCammon, I highly recommend it. Overshadowed by the likes of King and Koontz in the 1980’s McCammon produced a ton of horror and dark fantasy work, and the good news is that he is still producing today. Some of the works that I have read that I would suggest are:

Boy’s Life – This coming of age novel centers around a young boy growing up in the 1960’s in a small southern town. There is a mystery and many, many subplots with magical realism and societal drama galore. The result reminds me of both Ray Bradbury’s nostalgic works mixed with the odd freshness of Flannery O’Connor.

Swan Song – This epic post-nuclear holocaust novel details a group of survivors who are trying to keep alive a very important little girl. Filled with memorable characters and lots of action, this novel gives King’s The Stand a run for its money.

They Thirst – This somewhat flawed but entertaining book is a perfect October read as it details the takeover of Los Angeles by a vampire epidemic.

However, Blue World is a collection of a number of McCammon’s brilliant short stories and an exciting novella (from which the title gets its name). McCammon shows the range of his craft and his ability to create clever social commentary with these gems. One of my favorite, “Nightcrawlers” was even adapted as an episode of the 1980’s reboot of the Twilight Zone. Some of these are touching, some horrifying, but all of them are thought-provoking. One of my favorites is called “Night Calls the Green Falcon” and features an aged ex-actor who once donned the super heroic persona of a Saturday matinee serial hero. The story is nail-biting and, well just plan wonderful. I recommend this anthology with great enthusiasm and a five star rating.

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