Here’s a surprise book review! Guess it’s just your lucky week, huh?
Want to know what else is lucky? I am now offering you a chance to receive your very own, custom PLM micro fiction. If you don’t know, a micro fiction is a story told in 100 words. It’s a challenging writing experience, I have tons of examples in my Fiction section on this website if you want to check it out.
How do you get this micro fiction? By buying it here! When you purchase it, you’ll be supporting me and you’ll have a chance to outline what you’d like to see in your fiction! And don’t forget, this fiction is yours and yours alone!
Edgar Cantero is a Spanish writer, originally born in Barcelona. Along with writing, he also works as a cartoonist and creates works in English as well as Spanish. Besides Meddling Kids, which I am reviewing today, he has written the novels Dormir amb Winona Ryder, Vallvi, The Supernatural Enhancements, and This Body’s Not Big Enough for Both of Us. He has won the Joan Crexells Award in 2007 and Meddling Kids was a New York Times best-seller.
I actually really liked his bio from his website so I’ll share it here:
My name is Edgar Cantero. I can write and draw. I was born in Barcelona in 1981. Trained in the battlefields of literary contests, the highbrow Catalan cultural tradition was soon outinfluenced in my mind by Hollywood blockbusters, videogames, and mass-market paperbacks. My debut novel, Dormir amb Winona Ryder (“Sleeping with Winona Ryder”, 2007) won the prestigious Joan Crexells award; the second one, the punk dystopian thriller Vallvi (2011), got me sizeably fewer honors and many confused stares. In Spanish, I have been a regular contributor to satirical magazine El Jueves since 2007, as a writer and cartoonist. In English, I published the paranormal epistolar The Supernatural Enhancements in 2014. It was followed by the horror/action/comedy Meddling Kids (2017), which became a New York Times bestseller. There are dogs in both of them.Cantero’s website
SUMMER 1977. The Blyton Summer Detective Club (of Blyton Hills, a small mining town in Oregon’s Zoinx River Valley) solved their final mystery and unmasked the elusive Sleepy Lake monster—another low-life fortune hunter trying to get his dirty hands on the legendary riches hidden in Deboën Mansion. And he would have gotten away with it too, if it weren’t for those meddling kids. 1990. The former detectives have grown up and apart, each haunted by disturbing memories of their final night in the old haunted house. There are too many strange, half-remembered encounters and events that cannot be dismissed or explained away by a guy in a mask. And Andy, the once intrepid tomboy now wanted in two states, is tired of running from her demons. She needs answers. To find them she will need Kerri, the one-time kid genius and budding biologist, now drinking her ghosts away in New York with Tim, an excitable Weimaraner descended from the original canine member of the club. They will also have to get Nate, the horror nerd currently residing in an asylum in Arkham, Massachusetts. Luckily Nate has not lost contact with Peter, the handsome jock turned movie star who was once their team leader . . . which is remarkable, considering Peter has been dead for years.Amazon landing page
Published in 2017, Meddling Kids is a horror comedy that’s sure to get the 90s nostalgia going. The novel revolves around a Scooby Gang, complete with dog, who are haunted by the very last mystery they “solved”. Needing to tie up loose ends, they join up once more to five into the mysteries of Deboën Mansion.
I don’t think I would be exaggerating if I said this was one of my favourite books of all time. Very rarely do I have time now, with all my own writing and side projects, to read a book more than once but I made time for Meddling Kids. Where do I start? The characters are phenomenal. Each one of them is unique and flawed, but loveable (the main characters at least).
Also a bit of a spoiler but let me reassure all reading: the dog survives.
Oh and the sass. The sass is beautiful in this novel, as well as the dark humour. Of course, as a Lovecraft fan, I loved all the nods to his works. Overall, the novel was compelling, gripping, hilarious and suspenseful in turns. I know I’ll end up reading it again, because it really is just that good.
You get the 90s nostalgia with the Scooby Gang vibe, you get sass and humour similar to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and yet it’s still amazing, refreshing cosmic horror story.
I can’t recommend it enough. Romantic, adventurous, heart-wrenching horror the likes you’ve never read.
x P.L. McMillan
p.s. I honestly don’t know why it took me this long to write a review. I’m weird that way I guess.