Grind Your Bones To Dust
By Nicholas Day
Dissected into four distinct, yet connected parts, Day’s debut novel flows at a relentless pace. Part one depicts a man named Louis Loving fleeing across the Oregon desert, desperate to escape a haunted past and the grisly experience of having just watched his friends ripped apart by a pack of flesh-eating donkeys. Stumbling onto a remote farm, Louis finds temporary shelter. But, unfortunately, terrible memories aren’t the only things closing in on Louis as the brooding beasts threaten to turn the farm into an all-they-can-eat blood bath buffet.
Continuing our venture into hell, we then meet Father James Hayte, a man of dark tidings at best, the embodiment of evil at worst. The sinister minister’s on a mission to find his lost love and, with powers beyond this world, makes anyone who stands in his way all too grateful to die. Part three introduces a pair of estranged childhood friends who set out to quell the unsolved truths of their fathers and instead uncover layers of themselves they must somehow reconcile with or perish forever. Concluding with a gut-wrenching finale, we’re made to ponder if redemption has any room to live in a world where the line between faith and suffering has been worn to the breaking point.
Day’s unique voice perfectly blends various styles to tell his tell, infusing seductive, philosophical dread with the weight of his worlds’ despair along with foreboding characters who draw fear with a simple gesture. Razor-sharp prose and provocative carnage focus on pulling heart strings while unraveling your sanity throughout a story designed to cause a few lingering scars of its own.
An outstanding first novel which qualifies Nicholas Day as an author worth keeping an eye on, nightmares be damned.
*This review first appeared in Rue Morgue issue 192 Jan/Feb 2020 which you can purchase by clicking the link in this paragraph.*