The Corridors of the Dead, by Jonathan D. Allen, a review
January 13, 2012
THE CORRIDORS OF THE DEAD is a fantasy novel in which Matty DiCamillo, a young female clerk at a Circle K convenience store in Eureka, California, finds herself drawn into a multi-dimensional drama where the fate of Earth hangs in the balance. Along the way, she learns that she is a Chosen One, a person with unique gifts of universal importance.
Jonathan D. Allen in this first-person account gives Matty a unique persona, usually abrupt and brash, sometimes thoughtful and tender, almost always irreverent. She lives on the edge, holds nothing back. She is full of snide remarks, vulgarities, insults, vinegar and love, however mis-placed.
CORRIDORS OF THE DEAD is replete with biblical allusions, sideways references to theological and philosophical issues. We meet beings that inhabit multiple worlds, perhaps Satan, perhaps God (or the Creator).
The book takes off like a race car and displays Allen’s ability to write gripping prose that captures a reader’s attention. As the book progresses, however, this pace slows from time to time as descriptions pile on top of each other and characters’ conversations begin to sound like a professor repeating last week’s lesson.
Even in a fantasy book, a writer should get the details right if he decides to spend time describing a real object. In one chapter, Matty visits a gun store and chooses several guns she thinks will come in handy. She chooses pistols and refers to a handbook on guns she finds in the store, which allows her to ID them as .45-caliber Glocks. She notes how the guns are heavier than she thought they would be and stuffs them in her pants. Later, she has to use one of these guns. “The others returned fire and I had to do the same, once I figured out how to turn the damned safety off,” she says.
Many people who read books know about guns. That is why the writer must get it right. First, one of the main characteristics of a Glock is its light weight. Second, the only safety a Glock has is a double trigger. There is nothing to turn off.
I read CORRIDORS OF THE DEAD on my Kindle in the Smashwords edition provided to me for free as a reviewer. As I went along, I made note of a number of minor grammatical errors. These are needless distractions that get in the way of the story.
Jonathan D. Allen is a talented writer with a unique voice. According to the book’s trailer, he will bring Matty back in the summer of 2012 in THE CITY OF THE DEAD.
(reviewed for Women’s Literary Cafe)