A God in the Shed – J-F. Dubeau, 2017.
The serial killer who has tormented the outwardly bucolic Canadian village of Saint-Ferdinand has been captured at last.
He is a gentle, mad old man who has been storing the victims’ bodies in old refrigerators and their eyes…elsewhere. More horrifying? He has been protecting the village from something even worse than himself.
Enter young Venus, a village outsider and daughter of hippies (to her mortification), who inadvertently captures and imprisons a god in her backyard garden shed.
The god is not a nice god. It brings to mind Lovecraftian comparisons: its medium of artistic expression, for example, is gore. Many grisly events ensue.
A God in the Shed is hypnotic. You are lured into the narrative with snippets of village secrets, hints of arcane magic, and whispers of greedy, cabalistic societies.
Chapters shift between different characters’ perspectives, intensifying suspense and horror as pieces of the story fall together (in more figurative ways than one). Heroes become obsessed. Teens are trapped by the transgressions of their elders.
Complementing its flashes of darkly impish humor, the book raises deep questions about the nature of free will versus fate. The relationship between magic and science. Secrets of the afterlife and the nature of gods.
One word of caution: this is what I would call a “wet” book: it has a lot of sticky, bloody, imagery. Not to the extent of Nick Cutter’s Little Heaven, but it will leave us sensitive types with a few images we can’t unsee. Do not, however, let this deter you from the story. Fortify yourself and take the risk. A God in the Shed is a strange, compelling book. You won’t regret it.