Dan is an angsty emo-kid who works in a deadly dull shopping mall. He hates his job.
Rhoda is a junkie whose babysitting charge ran off while she was scoring cocaine. She hates her life. Rhoda bullies Dan into helping her search, but as they explore the neon-lit corridors behind the mall, disturbing text messages lure them into the bowels
of the building, where old mannequins are stored in grave-like piles and raw sewage drips off the ceiling. The only escape is down.
Plummeting into the earth in a disused service lift playing head-splitting Musak, Dan and Rhoda enter a sinister underworld that mirrors their worst fears. They finally escape, but something feels different. Why are the shoppers all pumped full of silicone? Why are the shop assistants chained to their counters? And why is a café called McColon’s
selling lumps of bleeding meat?
Just when they think they’ve made it back to the mall, they realize the nightmare has only just begun.
I love horrors – books, short stories, movies. So what a wonderful surprise finding a South African based horror story. I have not read many books that is set in a South African setting, so it was strange reading about landmarks and local shops that I know. What fun reading about Woolworths . . lol
The two main characters, Rhoda and Dan, are not very likable characters. They possess all the traits that most people try to avoid in others. Rhoda is a drug addict with lots of anger issues and Dan is just a depressed, “please feel sorry for me” kid that got lost along the way. Together they fall into a parallell world in the bowls of the shopping mall they find themselves in after hours.
I loved all the grits and grime of the story although there were stages when I had to just put down the book and go “urghhh”. I loved it. This is not a horror in the traditional sense, it is a modern take on the ubsurbly horror parrallel world that could exist in our nightmares.
Some reviews talk about the book being about consumerism and having deep views about life but for me it was just a good old horror story which left me wanting for the next. I bought THE WARD, set in the same parrallel world, and I am hoping for the same weird experience.