Shockadelica

Shockadelica by Jon O'Bergh

Weaving together supernatural legends from Ireland, Nigeria, and China, “Shockadelica” follows two friends who must confront their own fears while fighting an evil, existential threat. With a dash of humor and horror, the story explores prejudice, conspiracy theories, and things that aren’t what they appear to be, offering a critical look at the current state of the world.

Two horror podcasters—drag artist Kendall Akande and best friend Jenna Chen—share a passion for art, fashion, and horror. When they find out their Victorian-era apartment building might be haunted, they see an opportunity for an entertaining podcast episode. They learn that a past resident, inspired by demonic images of a goat-headed man, lured victims to his apartment and murdered them. While visiting his grave, they are spooked by a man in a goat mask who watches from the bushes.

The two friends launch their investigation and get a glimpse into the lives of their unusual neighbors. Rooney Xavier posts fake online testimonials for businesses and starts dating the landlord’s son, hoping for perks. Aging fashion diva Morvena Delacroix rages against any noise Rooney makes downstairs. The Nigerian/Irish witch Lilith Adebayo offers interventions to help Kendall with his nightmares. Lucy Lee talks to her vegetables when she cooks and helps Jenna cope with her grandmother’s worsening dementia. An intimidating musician named the Bone Man has tattoos of serial killers covering his arms. The dignified Mrs. Gupta, architect Elliott Bernbaum, and a reclusive tenant in the basement round out the cast. As strange sightings and sounds spread, Kendall and Jenna visit the landlord on Ward’s Island, but his house of curiosities only deepens the mystery. Then a stranger appears who promises protection if Kendall sacrifices something of value.

As the ghosts of the past become entwined with the growing terror, Kendall and Jenna must use their creativity to confront the evil force that threatens them all.

An album of horror-themed songs by the Bone Man complements the novel and is available at most streaming sites and online retailers.

The IndieMuse Review

This is a perfect read for supporting pride month, the author and one of the MCs are both part of the LGBTQ+ community. A treat for horror lovers, imo, are the section titles within each chapter; every single one is a title to a horror movie, book or song. I recognized a fair bit but some I had to look up, doing so made me smile each time it brought up a result. I’m not going to list them, because spoilers, but want to mention them so you don’t miss out on the awesomeness. So this is where I sound like a sick puppy by voicing my jealousy over the MC’s apartment experience, the good and the bad. I have a passing knowledge of my neighbors’ faces, except one, maybe? But not well enough to talk to them, knock on their door in the night because I heard a sound in the walls. How awesome would that be? All of us banding together(ish) to study the history of the building, worrying about each other. Truthfully we are all just more vocal Morvena’s worried about the noise levels ruining our evenings. Of course my partner would move us out at the first whiff of scary happenings so I’d be out of luck anyway…

Many spinning plates in the air but nary a one fell. Fancy speak aside, there were several subplots or side story lines running parallel to the main and I was impressed with how the author handled/incorporated them. I even learned of a folklore baddie that’s new to me, which I am shockad(elica) that I had not been aware of before, but glad to be informed of now. I am going to do more research into the subject in my free time, which is a pleasant side effect of reading, I must say. This has a companion CD, which is free to listen to on SoundCloud, titled Bag of Bones by the Bone Man. There are 12 songs, each connected to a particular creature of horror. The idea is to listen to the songs in order, a song to a chapter; add the prologue and epilogue to the first and last songs and all will be well.

SARAH DUCK-MAYR

Reading is my happy place and I want to share it with others; reviewing grew from basic tweets about books I enjoyed. I couldn’t be happier for how that turned out, book Twitter and the horror community have some of the nicest people. Dark fiction is where I find myself most of the time, but I enjoy almost any type of book if it catches my eye. I’m not really sure what this will turn into long term, but helping spread the word on an author’s book is the best feeling at the moment. Book nerd for life.

Curation Results: Shockadelica

gHoster
B-Baal
Emo-Lee
KnotBTK
Deathdealer
Curator Notes: "Unique multi-media creative project by O'Bergh worth checking out on both the literary and musical fronts." —KnotBTK

This title has been officially certified by indiemuse reviewers and curators as a recommended read. Read about our certification process here.

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