Sequels are always tricky. You can invite criticism if it’s too much of the same, or if it’s entirely different.
Thankfully David Wong has managed to run along that razor edge quite nicely, adding just enough new elements to make it seem fresh, but keeping the same overall feel as John Dies at the End.
Anyone who has read the first book will recognise that as being the creepiest comedy horror ever. His talent for awesome titles doesn’t seem to have faded either. His latest book picks up pretty much where the last one left off, with David and John in [Undisclosed], the town that seems to be a magnet for all kinds of supernatural goings on.
In this one it’s a variation on the zombie myth, but with an incredibly creepy twist. God is it creepy. The feeling of dread this book creates is ridiculous.
In fact, I’d recommend not reading it in bed, but instead in a nice brightly lit room, possibly with a friend close by.
The natural progression of sequels leads to this one being on a much greater scale, with the National Guard, a shadowy government organisation, and the overall evil of the previous book, the shadow men. They’re a damn good bad guy, because I know nothing at all about them. They’re just constantly evil in that pervasive way you want all your bad guys to be.
It’s tricky this one. I want to tell you more about it, but it being a sequel I feel like I might be giving too much away already. Just read them both, that’ll fix it.