Slugs Review

Slugs - Shaun Hutson

You can't eat steak all the time. Sometimes, you want a plate of ribs. Shit, sometimes you want a Slim Jim, or, Tom Cruise forbid, a can of SPAM. Well, this plate of meat has gone over some time ago and is crawling with maggots and rot. It's bad, and not even in a TROLL 2 so-bad-it's-fun-to-watch-while-you're-high-on-crank bad either. Slugs treats its readers like idiots. I know I feel like a moron for finishing it. But can you blame me for wanting a can of SPAM between sirloins?

Slugs is an absolute mess. An absolute mess that managed to get a sequel and a truly horrible film adaptation. Don't get me wrong, the book is not better than the movie. It's about the same. Both are terrible. I don't suggest either one.

Let's list the problems with the book, shall we?

The entire story revolves around a health inspector named Mike Brady trying to save a small town from carnivorous slugs. Brady refuses to go to the cops because they won't believe him. Great, I can dig... wait. He has proof. He's had proof since the beginning of the book because he snagged three of these flesh-eating slugs to take to his normalist buddy who works in a museum. So why doesn't he just show the cops the slugs? Beats me. Why doesn't he show the water authority guy later in the book? Beats me. Seems he would have shown someone else these things, you know, since they're literally dropping out of his fucking plumbing.

Which brings me to problem #2. These nasty little buggers are drip-drip-dripping out of Brady's sink. Only the health inspector who's decided to take these creatures on by himself is having this problem. Are the slugs sentient? Are they targeting Brady with their terrorist plot so that he won't disturb their plans for global domination? Are they... you know what, fuck it. It's stupid is what it is. Why the health inspector is the only person on the block who has slugs dropping from his pipes is never explained. And this is another example of him having the proof needed to either convince the cops or get the water authority to cut off the water. To top it all off, a guy dies in public, in a fucking restaurant, and the whole incident is swept under the rug. Oh well! His eye ball only exploded and a big-as-fuck white worm crawled from his gory eye socket, but fuck all that because REASONS, BITCHES!!! My point is this: The cops, at some point in time, would have gotten involved. It would have been obvious that this wasn't a serial killer, so the next thing would have been wildlife or infectious disease. They would have at least listened to Brady. #truth

#3 on our list of idiotic shit is the fact that we're dealing with slugs. In case you don't know, slugs are snails without shells and move about as fast. Everybody who dies in this book is a fucking idiot. They either fall into a roiling mass of slugs, sit still while the slugs devour them, or swallow the slugs. No shit. One guy literally bites into one of these things and swallows it without ever thinking that swallowing it might have been a bad idea. I know when I bite into something nasty, I spit it out. But that's just me. Anyway, one chick lays around while a slug crawls up her nu-nu. She literally just sits there screaming and lets it slither into her lady bits. I don't have a nu-nu, but I image one would want to protect such a vital part of one's anatomy.

And the fourth reason this book is a pile of shit is the writing. Oh, it's fucking terrible. There's over thirty instances of someone asking a question followed by the dialogue tag he wanted to know.

Example: "Why are you a bad writer?" he wanted to know.

Of course he wanted to know. He was asking a question. Not only is this the most useless dialogue tag I've seen, but it's repeated ad nauseum. The closer I got to the end of the book, the more Hutson used it. Over and over again. Are you tired of me harping on this shit? Yeah? Well, he continued to use it just like I'm continuing to harp on it. It's lazy writing. Couple that with suspicious comma usage and sentences like Brady smile, triumphantly (Not Brady smiled, not Brady smiles, but Brady smile) and I can safely say this book was never introduced to an editor.

In summation: This started out as a fun b-horror romp and quickly turned into the stupidest shit I've read in decades. I bought several Hutson novels at my local UBS because I liked the covers and some of my horror friends recommended him. I now understand why there were so many of his novels for sale at a secondhand shop. I'll be trading them all back in posthaste.

Final Judgment: The author could've at least tried.