Zumaya Boundless [link to buy]
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 paddles
This book is not usually the sort thing I’d read. The description is gay/horror; the cover is a hand with part of a digit missing, so normally I’d probably give it a miss. I’m so glad I didn’t. The book blurb from Amazon says you have never read a book like fingers breadth, which is the most accurate description of this book I’ve seen. I started reading with trepidation. I’m not into horror and I have a knack for turning the written word into a vibrant image in my mind. My hesitation came from what I might end up visualizing, as I read about the attacks on gay men, who are drugged, and have their finger (or part of it) cut off. I didn’t need to worry, as it turned out having a finger cut off isn’t the most horrifying part of the storyline.
There were many things I loved about this book. The author spares us gruesome details in relation to the attacks, and in some instances the act itself is done in a caring manner. He doesn’t limit his storytelling to a few main characters who tell the story and its impact on those around them. This is a book about a community that’s being terrorized, so there is a community of characters depicted throughout the book. Like many of us who are avid readers, I can usually get to a point in a story where I can predict the ending. Not so with Fingers Breadth. The book turned into something I never expected, a psychological mind twist, an immersion into the human condition and how people react to trauma, whether they are the victim of it or merely a spectator from a community perspective. The truly horrifying aspect of the book was the community response to what was taking place. Totally believable reactions of hatred, fear, violence, and the need to be part of what was going on by copying actions, or self inflicting injuries. The heinous act of mutilation becomes secondary, almost an afterthought, to the popular perceptions missing part of a digit evokes.