Book Review: Eidolon Avenue: The First Feast (2015)

Book Review: Eidolon Avenue: The First Feast (2015)

Dec 5, 2015

Eidolon Avenue: The First Feast

Crystal Lake Publishing

Author: Jonathan Winn

 

Eidolon Avenue - full cover small

 

Eidolon Avenue is host to one building. In this building, you will find five floors, with five doors per floor. Behind each door is a personal nightmare for each of the building’s tenants, nightmares that contort the sanity of every person involved. Each room, a hellish prison where the darkest thoughts and creatures exist.

 

In this collection, The First Feast, Winn shows us the horror that awaits on the first floor of the nightmare factory. In 1A, a retired Chinese assassin attempts to flee from her lifetime of bloodshed. A tattooed man in 1B haunted by his most dangerous regret. A frat boy serial killer in 1C facing his past and an elderly married couple stumbling and wounded from fifty years of failed murder/suicide pacts in 1D. And, finally, a young girl in 1E whose quiet thoughts unleash unspeakable horror.

 

The first thing you will notice when author Jonathan Winn slams open apartment 1A’s front door is Winn’s writing style. Each story unfolds in a nonlinear fashion that carries a poetic rhythm to it. Timelines branch out and intersect like the roots of a tree. Revelations in each story are never given, they are earned. This epical style begs you to reread each story before moving on to the next apartment.

 

Each apartment holds something truly horrifying and disconcerting. Even when fantastical elements are introduced, Winn grounds the story with grim realities. Violent and graphic, the actions and thoughts of each tenant push the boundaries of comfort. There are flourishes of intensely dark content, both physical and psychological, within the pages of this story. It never goes to Edward Lee extremes, but this is classic splatterpunk by way of early Clive Barker and Jack Ketchum with the unhinged way Robert Bloch can get under your skin. This is truly adult horror.

 

Winn’s imaginative writing is bleak, yet promising. A voice unlike any other, Eidolon Avenue is a masterclass effort in horror literature. With The First Feast representing tales of the first floor, I hope that Winn has every intention of showing us the appalling horrors that lie within the remaining four floors.