Review: Just Add Water by Hunter Shea

Just Add Water
By Hunter Shea
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

When I'm in the mood for some fun, creature-feature horror, Hunter Shea has become my automatic go-to.

Just Add Water is the first in a series of novellas by Shea from Kensington Publishing revolving around the concept of those items for sale at the back of comic books from back in the day. Stuff like automatic muscles, space rockets, and X-Ray eyes. In the first of these Mail Order Massacres, Patrick and David, flush with pocket money, decide to ignore their parent's warnings of ordering rip-off junk from the funny pages and splurge on a set of Amazing Sea Serpents. What arrives in the mail is far cry from what they had expected.

This is a brief novella, and Shea rockets the reader through from beginning to end. He doesn't waste much time getting the monsters rampaging through a sleepy Manhattan suburb, and the crazy goes full tilt in short order. There's plenty of violence and mayhem as things ramp up, but the main focus here is on fun.

Set in 1980, Shea's story recalled for me a lot of those fun, youth-driven monster movies of the era, stuff like Gremlins and The Monster Squad. This sucker is just pure, smooth entertainment from start to finish.

[Note: I received an advanced copy of this title from the publisher via NetGalley.]

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Michael Hicks

Michael Patrick Hicks is the author of the science fiction novels Convergence, an Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award 2013 Quarter-Finalist, and Emergence. His work has appeared in several anthologies, and he has written for the websites Graphic Novel Reporter and Audiobook Reviewer. In between compulsively buying books and adding titles that he does not have time for to his Netflix queue, he is hard at work on his next story.


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