Dean wrote the Introduction to this classic horror novel…
Everybody remembers their first Joe R. Lansdale story.
Mine was “Night They Missed the Horror Show,” which I read in the anthology Splatterpunks in 1991. To say I was unprepared for this black-hearted tale of racist hillbilly snuff-film purveyors and the high-school hellraisers who inadvertently stumble upon their doings is an understatement. Like a sucker punch to a soft belly or a club to the base of the skull, “Horror Show” leaves you stunned, out of breath, a hurt growing inside you that you know won’t be leaving any time soon. Hasn’t left me this quarter-century later. I know Lansdale would have it no other way.
Funny thing was, I craved that feeling. Sought it out. So within a couple months I’d finally tracked down Lansdale’s 1987 novel The Nightrunners (published in paperback by Tor, March 1989). I recall coming home one afternoon from the bookstore I worked at with my brand-new copy, going into my room, locking the door and then reading it in one white-hot unputdownable session. That had never happened to me before; I usually savored my horror fiction over several late nights. ButThe Nightrunners wouldn’t let go. Lansdale’s skill in doling out suspense and the threat/promise of the horrible things to come is unbeatable. He even tells you flat-out, after quoting a newspaper article about victims of a “Rapist Ripper,” that “no one knew there was a connection between the two savaged bodies and what was going to happen to Montgomery and Becky Jones.” You know you got to keep reading after that!
Read more @ Tor.com.