Ian Woodhead is such a wonderful and intense writer!! I just get hopelessly sucked into every story I’ve read of his.
He’s been around for a few years, has many many titles to his name and plays in all sorts of genres. Extreme horror, fantasy, sci-fi….
The guys got mad writing skills, that’s for sure. Yea, I think we should all start addressing him as Sir Ian Woodhead ~ he’s been Writer Knighted! 😀
This go round it’s a deep dark hardcore psychological extreme horror thriller. And it was oh so disturbingly good.
Snatched is the type of story that sticks with you, even after you try your damnedest to shake it off.
Told in first person from the point of view of our psychotic and delusional madman, James, which really gave Woodhead the power to subject us to every nasty, deplorable, and inappropriately humorous thought in his head (James’s head, not Ian’s….uhh hopefully EEECK!).
This really is the best perspective to go when telling such a story, you’re trapped and dragged threw his sick and twisted head and it’s very distressing because he’s so nonchalant when going about all his heinous activities, even hums cartoon themes during….which makes it all the more unnerving.
James is one deranged maniac, suffering from delusions of grandeur and an elevated sense of self, he has fabricated an outlook to the world, one that not only has him convinced that he is an evolved human but also one that has convinced him that adolescent boys are born evil, and he’s taken it upon himself to help such children. He must do all he can to eradicate that latent/simmering evil in boys, it’s his calling. He not only kidnaps them and holds them captive, he also murders their families, using the props he’s created from those graphically violent acts as more conditioning tools to ‘evolve’ the boy. Other tortures such as rape and sodomy are important measures he takes as well but he is methodical and calculating, he has certain ways of doing things and timing is everything to him.
All the boys are renamed Franco. IF a particular Franco just doesn’t work out for whatever reason, or succumbs to his injuries/frights….they are disposed of in the garden (it’s never looked so lush, which James takes as yet another sign he’s on the right path) and the search for a new Franco begins…
He will NOT stop in his quest, he feels guided by the spiritual hand of ‘providence’, providence will not let him fail.
A highly intelligent, manipulative, and cunning guy which is the most dangerous kind of psychopath. To say he has no morals or conscience would be an understatement but yet he IS in tune enough to have blended well into his community, he is a history teacher and helps run a soup kitchen. He obviously looks down on people, they are all beneath him…but has managed to fake a few acquaintanceships.
It’s one of his many hidden talents…
A sadistic narcissist through and through. He truly believes the dead families and even the child himself would thank him for his unwavering diligence and for having such strong convictions in the face of his many adversaries.
Well, James soon starts suffering himself, from memory gaps and fits of tempter. The absolute worst thing to happen to a conscienceless madman.
For the first time in years he begins flashbacking to his childhood, a childhood best left repressed, full of sexual abuse and mental anguish, and murder.
Some things will come to light, some unbelievably disturbing things, things best left in the dark.
OHHHH, and with that backstory Ian so gingerly sprinkled into this dark and morose tale, added many raw and emotional layers of depth and mystery. Backstory is key in these kinds of stories, the groundwork is very important. James has mommy issues.
A shocking ending that blindsides you, you do not see THAT coming. Yea, the last 3 or so chapters, you’ll read with your eyes closed. It’s still effective.
Donning a pair of germ repellent sterile gloves, I managed to snatch a few repugnantly vile thoughts from our lunatic’s sick head that do a pretty good job summing up the high regards he hold himself up in.
Generosity and good will were an intrinsic component of my personality.
It’s one of my many hidden talents.
I imagined that my soul would resemble a metaphysical pulsing ball of billions of colours whereas the tramp’s soul would likely look like a lump of sloppy dog-shit, clinging to the pavement after a heavy rainfall.
I wonder if this was a difficult book for Mr. Woodhead to write. It sure was difficult to read at times, I’d have to set my kindle down and either let the thoughts calm out or remind myself that it is just fiction. What makes it hard for this kind of story is that it can and does happen, it was written very realistically….like one of those unbelievably true crime documentaries where you just watch slacked jawed, tears welling up.
That’s how I read this book. It really could happen, it has happened….
He held back ~ nothing. You were unfortunately stuck in this guys head and unfortunately he sees himself as a jokester at times. It really messes with your emotions, are you supposed to chuckle, is that wrong??
You can’t help it, Ian has a way of just forcefully escorting you through it. You are truly at his mercy and if he wants you to giggle sob, you giggle sob. WE are not an evolved species after all, just your basic standard edition rehashed human folk.
This very well may be my all time FAVORITE read from Ian. It’s hard to gauge though, them dino’s tearing up that mall in Pterodactyl Mall or that whole city full of balmy nutters in Brutality are high up there too!! I really can’t say, he writes so many amazing and varied books!
I very much appreciate receiving an ARC copy of this book from Mr. Woodhead. Any time, any place. Have your people get with my people. Well, I don’t have people per say…just the voices. 😀