Thank you, Jay for sending me a copy of Strange Secrets by Mike Russell in return for an honest review.
This is my first-time reading Mike Russell's work and it was a wonderfully bizarre book. This collection of short stories is by far the most interesting thing I have ever read and I am still working out exactly how I feel about it. In the best way possible in this book, your sense of reality gets thrown out the window and all of a sudden, you’re on a journey of pure insanity!
I want to highlight Mike’s ability to paint such vivid imagery in few words. Each story varies in length some with multiple chapters, other with just one. Each story has its own plot and depth, no matter how short and at the centre of each story there is a grain of truth. The stories invoke a whole set of emotions and opinions; they challenge our viewpoint and make us think about tough decisions we make as individuals and as a society. It’s quirky and creative and funny while still having a creepiness about it you are constantly entertained while being simultaneously deeply unsettled.
Mike’s very straightforward narrative paired with extremely odd and obscure subjects helped him achieve this impressive and enjoyable and comparable to the wonderful Tim Burton who we all know I love.