Deadly Ever After

Archive for the tag “Everyman”

Justin Robinson Makes Something New and Cool: Everyman

TODAY’S BREW: Chocolate cappu-who the hell cares it’s caffeine.

By Julie


Another ass kicking book has escaped the clutches of Books of the Dead.  Justin Robinson’s Everyman explores a being that we never see ever ever; the doppleganger. It seems Roy Daley has a knack for finding something completely different. It gives you some classic horror feel like Invasion of the Body Snatchers, but with a really character driven feeling.

Also, I love Justin Robinson. For reasons like THIS: (when asked what the hell his book was about)

I felt like Stefon trying to explain some terrifying aspect of New York nightlife to Seth Meyers.  “This place has everything.  Doppelgangers, living cell phones, a woman with nothing left to lose, gestalt entities…”

“I’m sorry, ‘gestalt entities?’”

“It’s that thing where a bunch of people become one giant monster?”

“That’s not a thing.”

The initial idea of the doppelganger — the monster — as a sort of anti-hero, had legs, but then the entire book would be the adventures of a psychopathic little worm wrecking lives until… until what exactly?  He had nothing to do.  It wasn’t until I started thinking about his victims, and what it could mean to lose one’s identity so thoroughly, that I had the seeds of a plot.

Justin, about naming his critter:
So I talked to my friend, [who is knowledgeable of such myths], hoping he would tell me what to call it.  “Oh, that?  That’s a Morgendorfer.  Romanian peasants thought they came through villages at night poaching chickens and itinerant carnival workers.”  (I have no idea why I thought a Romanian monster would have a German name, or why it would be the same as Beavis and Butthead’s favorite classmate, but I digress.)  Instead, he said, “That’s not a thing,” and I imagined the boyish face of Seth Meyers locked in his patented mix of baffled amusement and frustrated horror.  I told my friend I had been referring to the monster as a gestalt entity in my notes, and he said, “Yeah, that sounds good.”

And Justin says this about his main character, Ian Covey:
Ian is a sad, weak little man who is dangerous because of his weakness rather than in spite of it.  He shares more than a little DNA with the protagonist of my other horror novel The Dollmaker, though while Stephen was broken, he was not destructive like Covey.  Both men gained their power essentially by taking it from the universe.  They were broken in precisely the right way and had enough willpower to work the universe’s cheat codes.  The problem is that everything has a consequence, and pushing things out of whack enough to make living women out of wood or steal people’s faces is going to create some blowback.

I love a character that thinks he’s a good guy, but he’s a sonofabitch, and vice versa, and I love the way Justin does this. He gives you an unexpected anti-hero, and that is something I can get behind. Everyman is the first of many things I’ll be reading by Justin Robinson, because the dude knows how to write original horror, with a compelling character who makes messed up choices. I love that shit.


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