This book isnt on Amazon so for right now I dont know how to direct anyone to purchasing it, but when I find out I will edit this post.
Edit: I knew I had originally grabbed this book as a free download Garrett Cook offered, but I didn’t realize its always free. You just can’t get a better deal on an awesome book like this one, everybody should download a copy and buy his other books.
The first thing I ever read from Garrett Cook was a short story titled The Torments and Indignities Endured by Job During His Tenure At the Hello Kitty Factory, it was on his site one day when I was just checking out random writers. It was great, funny and entertaining. When I got this collection and saw that this story was included I had a pretty good feeling that this book was going to be good. I was right.
The collection kicks off with Meatballs of Knowledge, which Garrett Cook state’s at the beginning was written as a custom story for a fan. It tells the story of a sentient sandwich in the Garden of Eden. Much like his story about Job it’s a bizarre and witty retelling of a classic biblical story, just slightly blasphemous.
Another favorite of mine from this collection is The Man in the Film Noir Hat. Nobody knows who he is, he just sells ideas for only a dollar. Everybody jumps at the chance to give him a dollar and gladly uses the ideas he gives.
Finishing out this collection is Along the Crease, which is almost my favorite story I’ve read by Cook (I say almost because Archelon Ranch is number one.) Two unlikely people are told they are each other’s true love and that they cannot be together or they will bring about the end of everything. It’s a truly moving story, these two individuals want to do the right thing as they are continuously drawn to each other.
I couldn’t say enough good things about this book. Cook’s stories have bizarre and fantastical ideas but they have a real human feel. He is definitely a writer to watch out for. He mixes genres with the best of them and has a knack for warm and compelling stories that draw the reader in, making it very difficult to put his books down mid story.
Get it for free here Heresy and Hearsay for free
This book took me by surprise. This is another one I got without any prior knowledge of any of its content. Starting into it that first chapter struck me as really strange. Now I like weird stories, and so far I haven’t found anything that I thought was just too much, but with this I found myself questioning whether I may have finally found it. But I read on, and I’m so glad I did. Once I got into the second chapter everything changed, I was hooked. This was one of those can’t put it down books for me, I wanted to forget about anything I had going on and just read this straight through.
Telling the story of human test subject Bernard we are treated to a fantastical world where dinosaurs roamed free, and gilawalrus’s came out to hunt when the wind comes, and the dreaded surbanites that live past the malls wander free. The main characters in the book know that they are living in a book, created by Garrett Cook, and that one day a Protagonist will arrive. Clyde believes that his brother Bernard is this protagonist. Against the wishes of the Narrativists, which are the followers of the church of Authorial Intent, Clyde decides to set in motion events that will prove his theory about his brother. But Bernard is one track minded, he just wants to find Archelon Ranch.
Now I haven’t been exposed to much Meta fiction. I feel like if done incorrectly this style could be annoying, in the wrong hands I would hate such a story. Luckily Garrett Cook wrote this, and he is a very capable writer for such an under taking. The characters are genuine, there’s not a dull one in the bunch. And Cook keeps the book paced fast enough that you may have to stop and reread certain passages to make sure you took in everything on the page.
Garrett Cook has written a compelling tale, one where I was virtually on the edge of my seat hoping for Bernard to escape the city and make it to Archelon Ranch. This is a must read for fans of Bizarro, and I would easily recommend it to those who are not also. Plot preserve.
Buy it here Archelon Ranch at Amazon.com