The Boulevard Monster: Jeremy Helper
Reviewed by Steve Stred
- Paperback: 300 pages
- Publisher: Bloodshot Books (7 April 2017)
Since day one as I started to try and make any sort of inroads as a writer, Jeremy Hepler has been supportive. I don’t remember exactly how we connected, but when I started to try and focus on broadening my scope beyond having a Facebook Author Page, Jeremy has always commented, shared/retweeted and helped to lift me up.
It’s been phenomenal and really, something I’ll never forget. Why I waited so frickin’ long to read ‘The Boulevard Monster’ is beyond me, but after I read his short story in ‘Midnight in the Graveyard,’ I knew I had to get to it ASAP.
KR: You can read the Kendall Review for Midnight In The Graveyard HERE
‘The Boulevard Monster’ is stunning.
Hepler throws us into the deep end immediately. Two friends enjoying some beer, one bragging about his new pickup truck. The owner of said truck goes to use the restroom. The other friend is curious – takes a closer look at this shining new ride – and spies a dead body that is supposed to be hidden in the box of the truck.
From there we get introduced to a reptilian type man named Luthor, who now expects our main character Seth to act as his assistant and things begin to become complicated and soon unravel.
The strength of this story isn’t in the gore or the ‘horror.’ No, the strength here lies in the connection the readers will have with the characters. If you remove some of the unsavoury bits, Hepler delivers one of the best character-driven stories I’ve ever read. The backstories are heartbreaking – about why Seth has an adopted daughter, why he wants his girlfriend and her brother to have a better life and why he wants to make some money to support his father, who has dementia.
Time and time again, Hepler drives the hammer down, making you squirm but also try your best to hold back tears. I always love when you can feel that an author is connected with their work, their writing, and this is the case here – Hepler was invested in this story to the extreme.
I’ve cried while writing stuff before – I wouldn’t be surprised if Hepler had to keep stepping back from scenes, needing a mental break from the heartache he was inflicting into the tale.
I pre-ordered Hepler’s book ‘Cricket Hunters’ the day I saw it was up for pre-order, and I’m not going to make the mistake of letting it sit for too long this time. Hepler is a must-read for me now, but also one of the most supportive authors out there.
I can’t recommend this enough.
KR: You can read a Kendall Review of Cricket Hunters HERE
The Boulevard Monster
2017 Bram Stoker Award Nominee for Superior Achievement in a First Novel!
I KNOW WHAT YOU HAVE HEARD ABOUT ME
You say that I am a madman. You say that I am dangerous. You say that I am the one who has been abducting women, slaughtering them, and burying their corpses all around this city for years. You are wrong, because only part of that statement is true…
I AM NOT A KILLER
I know that you probably won’t believe me. Not now. Not after all that has happened, but I need to tell my side of the story. You need to know how this all began. You need to hear about the birds, but most of all, you need to understand…
I AM NOT THE BOULEVARD MONSTER
Steve Stred writes dark, bleak horror fiction.
Steve is the author of the novels Invisible & The Stranger, the novellas The Girl Who Hid in the Trees, Wagon Buddy, Yuri and Jane: the 816 Chronicles and two collections of short stories; Frostbitten: 12 Hymns of Misery and Left Hand Path: 13 More Tales of Black Magick, and the dark poetry collection Dim the Sun.
On September 1st, 2019 his second collection of dark poetry and drabbles called The Night Crawls In will arrive. This release was specifically created to help fund the 1st Annual LOHF Writers Grant.
Steve is also a voracious reader, reviewing everything he reads and submitting the majority of his reviews to be featured on Kendall Reviews.
Steve Stred is based in Edmonton, AB, Canada and lives with his wife, his son and their dog OJ.
You can follow Steve on Twitter @stevestred
You can visit Steve’s Official website here