Title: Cousin Calls
Author: Zeb Haradon
Goodreads page: Link
A college student reluctantly attends a family chili cookout that turns into a never ending nightmare. A man desperate for job skills uses a brain implant to help him learn, but it malfunctions and leaves him sexually attracted to shadows. A private investigator is hired to discover who keeps befouling the walls of convenience store bathrooms. Two deer engaged in combat find that they are unable to unlock from one another’s antlers after the fight is over. A single mother spends 2020 battling an evil landlord, a fascist neighbor, national political chaos, and a global pandemic. These are the strange stories told by regulars at the local bar on Christmas Eve, stories which each began with a phone call from someone who announced “you don’t know me, but we’re cousins.”
“You don’t know me, but we’re cousins”. A phrase that you will learn will always have some kind of bad side to even the best proposal you will get from that cousin. This book is an anthology of stories of people that decide to answer these Cousin Calls and get along with it.
WHAT THE FUUU….?! is also a phrase you will say a lot while reading this book because it is full of absurd twists and turns. Completely bizarre events that you totally want to expect and that will result in highly entertaining for the reader. You could tell me: “obviously they are completely unexpected if they are some random absurd events!”; trust me, you need skill to add them to a book without having the reader frowning and instead being amused by them… and the author has a ton of this skill! Is even able to pull out one of these plot twists right in the last pages of the book!
I love the writing style of this author and how he is able to completely entertain the reader while talking of basic things and everyday life until it gets messed up by a bizarre element- He makes you explore surreal scenarios that however get really interesting for how near they are to reality.
There are references to American politics but they are so blatant that even someone who is not American and isn’t interested at all in foreign policy will find them really easy to understand and probably will get a laugh out of them.
A complete recommended reading unless you are a child (or a Trump supporter) because it contains some elements and scenes not appropriate for you.
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.