Sometimes, when I’m feeling brave I like to take a blind leap into books that I know nothing about just so I can watch them unravel before my eyes and truly experience where they take me. All I knew about The Patchwork Prince: Stumbling Stoned by A. Van Wyck was that it was weird, dark, and a little crazy, which made it sound like the perfect mysterious story to jump into.
I knew it was about a mental patient, I knew he was often heavily sedated–hence the title Stumbling Stoned–and at first I was kind of worried, thinking “A drugged mental patient? How exciting could that be?” The other thing that made me think twice was the cover’s homemade look. I won’t lie, it made me consider that perhaps the work inside the cover had that same, simple, homemade feel. But thank my lucky stars, the author did an amazing job of making this story something that I was happy to have stumbled into (no pun intended…okay, maybe just a little.)
It began in the sullen, tragic mental ward with lots of heavy intravenous drugs entering blood, but the protagonist (whose is actually a nameless John Doe) has a sharp sense of humor beneath the fog of sedatives and he’s actually a funny guy! Before I knew what was happening, he discovers a sort of superhuman strength and manages to escape the facility through a melee of fists and bites and a tangle of limbs. What follows is high-speed car chases, drug lords, beautiful women, supernatural entities, and surprises around every corner. It was at times grotesque, humorous, unbelievable, but overall was something that I enjoyed reading.
This book ended up taking me into a sex hovel where piles of what were once beautiful humans wasted into putrefying liquid; it carried me into a graveyard where a speaking cat commands dead bodies; it threw me out a high-rise window where I rolled into the street and fled on foot! It was a fun ride that kept you guessing with a twist of mystery as you both wonder and learn how John ended up in the mental house in the first place. I highly recommend this book if you enjoy off-beat action movies, gory fiction, and endearing weirdos.
Thank you to the author for providing a reader’s copy of this book and thank you Blackthorn Book Tours for having me!