#Horror Review: Resurrection Dreams by Richard Laymon

Damn. In the first seven pages of Resurrection Dreams we have a crashed car, a naked dead man in the driver's seat, an equally naked woman sprawled on the pavement, his bitten-off penis lodged in the mouth of her severed head, and two horny teens interrupted in the middle of molesting what's left of her torso by the sound of sirens approaching.

Yup, this is a Richard Laymon book, through and through.

At its heart, Resurrection Dreams is a dark, depraved, disgusting love story. Vicki is a small-town doctor, sickened by the thought of returning home, and Melvin is a small-town gas jockey, excited by the return of the one woman who ever treated him with respect. The catch?

One, Melvin is just a little bit mad, having spent years in the loony bin for digging up a fellow student and attempting to resurrect her corpse for the school science fair.

Two, Melvin is still playing the resurrection game, only now he's murdering women to get the bodies he needs, suffocating them to preserve their beauty.

Three, he's finally found a method that works, and he's slowly building his own little army of love slaves and assassins as he pursues the one woman that matters . . . Vicki.

As twisted terror and titillation go, few authors manage the awkward blending as well as Laymon, and this is among his best. Everything you're afraid might happen, it happens. Wherever you fear the story is headed, it's going there. Whatever you imagine is coming with the next page turn, it's something darker. No matter how embarrassed you are for the characters (or Laymon), there's something even crazier lurking in the shadows.

The action is crazy, the horror insane, and the heroics absolutely bonkers. There's nobody who writes like Laymon, and there's nothing quite like the wild ride that his books provide.

Paperback, 370 pages
Published March 1st 2005 by Leisure Books (first published September 15th 1988