Eraserhead Press (March 1, 2020)
eBook/ Trade Paperback/ 126 pp
Alright, folks. Step right up, read all about it. The king of bizarro has a new book out and you should be all about it. Until those new pre-orders for the author’s recently announced ‘The Bad Box’ from Eraserhead Press arrive in September, I came to the harsh realization that I hadn’t taken the time to write up a review for this one yet. So, let’s take a moment to remedy that situation real quick as I had finished this one up around the time it came out a little bit earlier this year (back in March, I believe) and then just here again decided to reread it for the sake of typing up this review. So, here it is. Right here. Right now-now-now.
‘Snuggle Club’ by Carlton Mellick III summed up in three words or less is this… A GOOD TIME. It’s like if Chuck Palahniuk’s ‘Fight Club’ were to meet H.P. Lovecraft at a Dungeons and Dragons tournament and then at the end of the tournament the two of them gazed into each other’s eyes, got hella weird and creepy, and then one of them said to the other, “Oh, hey… I have something I need to show you and maybe while we’re at it we can make some weird cuddly fur babies and shit.” And then, you know… H.P. Lovecraft continues to show Chuck Palahniuk’s ‘Fight Club’ the door but in this case it’s a secret door that leads to all the fabulous creations that only the most creative weirdos in the universe could even begin to imagine.
You get the point, so when recently widowed Ray Parker’s wife dies and he’s sick to death and tired of not being able to sleep at night because he misses the closeness of his beloved wife. He decides to visit a local cuddle group at a place called Cuddle Me! A place that hosts and specializes in just that, cuddle parties, so that he can try to experience the closeness of another human being and hopefully get another good night’s sleep before his eyeballs dry out of his skull and his brain rots into a pile of mush-fog. No matter how strange or awkward it might be Ray’s willing to try anything at this point. But what he doesn’t see coming, well, aside from the overall weirdness and eccentricities of the other members of the group, was just how serious others really took to the whole overall art of cuddling. He didn’t even know it was a thing before. When the event coordinators realize just how soft, squishy, and cuddly Ray really is they decide to invite him to another group. A group that takes place below them after the cuddle session is over. A place right beneath their very feet. Imagine the netherworld of cuddling. The inside-out of the Cuddlesphere. Picture an entire CUDDLEACOLYPSE right beneath your very bones and it’s raining cuddles in every direction and then some. This is where the author really steps up his creative genius and introduces us to the ultra-soft and squishy cuddle gods of the Snuggleverse, sentient worm and bug-like creatures from another dimension who cuddle so hard, whilst taking the art of cuddling beyond the entire overall human experience and turning them into something much more, how do you say it… extraterrestrial, perhaps?
Oh, and there is a character named DJ Tanner. Shout-out to ridiculous cheesy 90s family comedies, heyyyyy. There’s a lot more than a Full House going on in this one though, folks.
Check it out!!!