Grind Your Bones To Dust: Nicholas Day
Reviewed By Steve Stred
After devouring (and loving) Day’s ‘At the End of the Day I Burst Into Flames’ I was keen to check out ‘Grind…’ but like everyone, my TBR is insane and it took me some time to finally get around to it.
Oddly, I’ve only had a few books over the last few years that hit me like this one did, the last being Craig DiLouie’s ‘Children of Red Peak.’ That is, books I absolutely loved but also absolutely infuriated me.
I think with ‘Grind…’s case, this was due to the borderline Bizarro leanings that I found reading this.
What I liked: A gruesome novel, told through interconnected novellas, ‘Grind Your Bones to Dust’ is a very dark read that focuses on bleakness and pain. The beginning opens in the Oregan wilds, a group of Hell Donkeys wreaking havoc on a farm and from there Day doesn’t relent.
I struggle to define stories, but this one had a speculative Bizarro feel to it that worked to allow anything to happen and the characters Day crafted were left to take the brunt of his imagination.
Each story/section worked well to pull the readers along and keep us feeling dirty and on the cusp of collapse, but for me the highlight was just how brutal things were, even when we’d already been subjected to horrific events.
What I didn’t like: As I mentioned, at times this goes bonkers and entered (at least to this reader) Bizarro areas of plot progression. It works to move things along but also threw me for a loop.
Why you should buy this: Day’s a fantastic writer and if the opening of this book doesn’t hook you, the brutality that comes after certainly will. This is one that will either tick all your boxes or make you feel completely repulsed.
Either way, this is one you should definitely check out.
Grind Your Bones To Dust
In his first novel, This Is Horror and Wonderland Award-nominated author Nicholas Day invites you to take a journey into a Hell that is at once uncomfortably familiar, yet unlike anything you’ve ever encountered before: a surveyor finds himself pursued by flesh-eating donkeys in the furthest reaches of Oregon’s desert; a mass-murderer leaves the sanctity of his mountain home to pursue a long-lost love, his guide an otherworldly raven possessed by a 19th century American humorist; in nearby Klamath Falls, two estranged childhood friends set off to find a missing father with the help of two aging cowboys; and, a prisoner in her own home sees a vision of death and knows there is no escape.
Pain is proselytizing.
Death is the one, true faith. And everyone worships in their due time.
The Gates of Nihil are wide open and waiting to…
GRIND YOUR BONES TO DUST.
Steve Stred is the author of a number of novels, novellas and collections. He has appeared in anthologies with some of Horror’s heaviest hitters.
He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada with his wife, son and their dog OJ.
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