Thursday, February 25, 2016

Welcome to Night Vale (Now run as fast as you can in the opposite direction)

TITLE: Welcome to Night Vale
AUTHORS: Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor
PUBLISHER: Harper Perennial
PUBLISHING DATE: October 20, 2015

FROM GOODREADS: From the creators of the wildly popular Welcome to Night Vale podcast comes an imaginative mystery of appearances and disappearances that is also a poignant look at the ways in which we all struggle to find matter where we live.

Located in a nameless desert somewhere in the great American Southwest, Night Vale is a small town where ghosts, angels, aliens, and government conspiracies are all commonplace parts of everyday life. It is here that the lives of two women, with two mysteries, will converge.

Nineteen-year-old Night Vale pawn shop owner Jackie Fierro is given a paper marked "King City" by a mysterious man in a tan jacket holding a deer skin suitcase. Everything about him and his paper unsettles her, especially the fact that she can't seem to get the paper to leave her hand, and that no one who meets this man can remember anything about him. Jackie is determined to uncover the mystery of King City and the man in the tan jacket before she herself unravels.

Night Vale PTA treasurer Diane Crayton's son, Josh, is moody and also a shape shifter. And lately Diane's started to see her son's father everywhere she goes, looking the same as the day he left years earlier, when they were both teenagers. Josh, looking different every time Diane sees him, shows a stronger and stronger interest in his estranged father, leading to a disaster Diane can see coming, even as she is helpless to prevent it.

Diane's search to reconnect with her son and Jackie's search for her former routine life collide as they find themselves coming back to two words: "King City". It is King City that holds the key to both of their mysteries, and their futures...if they can ever find it.

I honestly believe that no matter what I write in this review, it will never effectively explain this book. On the other hand, I also believe that I could sum up the entire book, plot, character development and all, in three paragraphs which would save anyone from having to read it. And overall, those two sentences explain exactly how I feel about this book - confused.

I admit I wanted to read it on a whim. I like the "odd" book here and there and this seemed to be just the thing that would fit into that category. Let's just say that this goes so far beyond odd that I don't know how to describe it, but I will gladly admit that it isn't for me. Thank the gods above that I checked it out from the library and didn't purchase it for myself no matter how tempted I was by the pretty purple cover.

This book is about Diane, Jackie, Diane's son and a shapeshifter named Josh, a waitress in the local diner who is actually a tree, a man named Evan who walks around town appearing and disappearing and handing people pieces of paper with KING CITY written on it, 30-40 men named Troy (or actually the same man, just multiples of him), a tarantula, secret agents and exploding flamingo lawn decorations. Throw in a lot of other miscellaneous information and if that sounds interesting, then this might be the book for you.

Sadly, after writing this, I realize that I am struggling between a one and two star rating. I know some people love this and rave about it and good for them. I am glad people like it, but I can't recommend it to anyone in good faith. If I could DNF books, I would have. I did actually want to see how it ended, which is why I finally went with a 2-star rating, but in the real scheme of things, 3 paragraphs and I would have known the entire 400+ page story.

(HEY!  I just realized that the  Goodreads description is basically all you need to know in order to have read the book!)

RATING: 2 stars



  1. Awe, sorry you didn't care for this one. It does sound pretty odd. I hope your next book is much better!

  2. Oh bummer, I hate when I don't like a book.

  3. I am sorry you didn't like this one, but to tell you the truth I think I wouldn't like it either. Because it really does sound like a very confusing and odd book. And I have a strong gut feeling that this book is not for me either. Thank you for your great post.

  4. Sorry it wasn't very good. I admire the fact that you can plow through books you aren't enjoying. If I don't DNF books, I find myself not reading anything at all.

  5. Sorry you didn't like it, but I appreciate your sharing that description. I usually like odd books too, but this one sounds like it wasn't done that well. Hope your next book is better!

  6. I was planning on listening to the podcast before attempting this book because I figured the back stories might help.