They say don’t judge a book by its cover, but let’s be real. We all do it. No one would care about bookstagram without beautiful images of eye-catching book covers. In my opinion, horror and bizarro books tend to have the coolest cover art. The cover art on this one is reminiscent of Happy Tree Friends and I just love it. The Comfy-Cozy Nihilist: A Handbook of Dark Fiction, by Nathan D. Ludwig is wild. It’s dark and hilarious. It fulfills my bizarro weirdness loving desires.
This collection starts off strong with a story called Fuck Fangsgiving. The reader follows a pair of siblings who go home for Thanksgiving under the impression that their family are vampires and have invited them home to feast on them rather than turn them. It’s violent, sad, and totally absurd. So good. I knew the general direction Welcome to the Show was headed, but what a twist. I freaking love a bizarre twist. Adding Worst Laid Plans to my watch list. Nearly every story leans toward dark comedy (which I love!). My favorite was probably the doppelganger clown story, For My Next Switch, I’ll Need a Volunteer. There’s just something about doppelgangers and clowns that I find super entertaining. Don’t be fooled by the cheerful looking cover (yes, I consider it cheerful even with the bear about to blow its brains out). These stories are dark and there’s lots of gore, but it’s got just the right amount of humor.
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ for me. The stories themselves are all great, but I think my favorite part of this collection is the author commentary after each one. I love that little peek into the creative process. I enjoyed the intro and outro chapters. It makes me feel like I’ve gotten to know the author in a more personal way. And while I didn’t care to try and figure out what authors of the classics were trying to say back in high school English class, I do enjoy being clued in via author commentary now. I suppose it’s different when you’re existing in the same webspace as the authors you’re reading.
Big thanks to Nathan D. Ludwig, GenreBlast Books, and BookSirens for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review. You can buy The Comfy-Cozy Nihilist, by Nathan D. Ludwig on Amazon for a couple bucks.