Kevin Shamel is not a new name in the bizarro scene. I recently read Porn Land, or as I have dubbed it, Phil and Zed’s Sexcellent Adventure. I loved it. It was pure fun and totally bonkers. Shamel set the bar for absurdity ridiculously high and after reading Russells in Time, I am convinced this man sets that bar at a level only he can surpass.
Let’s talk about the premise of this book. It is called Russells in Time: Land Squid vs Dinosaurs and the title is a mini synopsis. The Russells (Kurt, Keri, and Brand) are transported forward to a time when giant technologically advanced land squids rule the earth and are at war with even more technologically advanced dinosaurs. The squiddies want the Russells to fight on their behalf using some ancient combat suits that apparently can only be activated and controlled by the long extinct humans, hence the time travel. They tell the Russells one version of events and the dinosaurs tell them another. All Kurt and Keri want to do is find a way to get back home. Brand doesn’t care one way or the other, the whole thing is one big joke to him. When it becomes clear that the Russells aren’t playing by the rules, new players enter the game and all hell breaks loose.
Which side is telling the truth? Who wins this war? Do the Russells ever get home? You’ll have to read it to find out.
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ for me. I love the wacky premise. The whole thing is absurd and totally hilarious. The Russell Brand character was a perfect caricature of the real Russell Brand. All of the celebrity jokes and references were on point. This book is super fun.
Oh no, porn is illegal! So begins the synopsis of Porn Land, by Kevin Shamel on Goodreads.
I want to start by saying that while a title like Porn Land is sure to catch the attention of bizarro fans like myself, I feel like there was a missed opportunity at naming this book. Our heroes are called Phil and Zed, so of course my mind conjured up a more obvious title. Phil and Zed’s Sexcellent Adventure. I’m sure that was intentional.
The stage is set right on the first page. Porn is illegal and Phil is determined to archive as much of it as possible before it’s all scrubbed from the internet, much to the dismay of his roommate Zed. In his quest to archive all the porn the internet has to offer, he comes across an old website…one that he thinks may actually be the first porn website to have ever existed. Porn Land. He is intrigued by its low traffic. With one click, he and Zed are sucked right into the website, Stay Tuned style. (Side note: if you haven’t seen Stay Tuned, do it. I feel like the author has definitely seen it.)
Just as the couple in Stay Tuned move from one warped version of a familiar show to another, Phil and Zed move from one familiar porn scenario to another. They land in a sorority house and go to jail. Then they meet a guy who tells them they’re there to save Porn Land from disappearing and the real world from losing “good old-fashioned hedonism” and it just snowballs from there.
This book is everything I expect from the genre. You won’t find flowery poetic language here. There are no life lessons. A book snob might call it “poorly written”, but I view it as easily readable, vividly descriptive, and just plain fun. Listen, a book doesn’t need to be lyrical to be good. This book is great fun. There’s so much going on, but I won’t spoil it for you. Just read it.
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5 rounded up for the rating. Super fun book (standard disclaimer: if you’re into bizarro).
This book will be released on April 11, 2022. Pre-order your copy now on Amazon.