John Dies at the End

Wong, D. (2009). John dies at the end. New York: Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martin’s Press.

Isn’t that just a great title?

This is the book I’m reading now.  It is really quite good.  If you read at all, you will be familiar with the irreverent writing style.  It feels unpolished and rambling, but it’s a real page turner.  It’s also the only book I can remember making me laugh out loud since I was a kid reading The Phantom Tollbooth.

It’s a fictional account of David Wong’s adventures into the paranormal.  David Wong isn’t his real name.  He just paired a common first name with the most common surname on the planet.  It’s not the normal kind of paranormal populated by spirits, zombies, or vampires.  No, the demons take the form of scorpion-tailed, beaked monstrosities with blonde wigs.  That explode dogs.  Dogs that can drive by channeling David’s friend John who was high at the time.

What’s remarkable about this book is how it was published.  This was basically a hobby project by a dude with a website.  He posted a short story about David and John.  People kept pestering him for more.  They would print it out, bind it and pass it to friends.  It eventually snowballed until it got published.  It was republished in 2009 for wide distribution in a slick hardcover with an awesome cover.  In 2008, David Coscarelli, of Bubba Ho-tep fame, bought the rights to the film.  It has not yet been made, but I would really like to see it on the screen.  It is definitely a Bubba Ho-tep kind of story.


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