Review copy provided in exchange for an honest review
As a fan of Karen Runge’s short stories, including “Going Home” and “High Art”, I was really looking forward to reading Seeing Double. What I wasn’t expecting was the amount of sex and violence, which was more than I usually find myself reading. I know, I know, I read horror, but this book is packed with this stuff. I don’t scare or offend easily but sometimes a book just hits your buttons in the right order to cause overload. This is where I found myself with the provocative and edgy dialog, and more than I’m typically comfortable with. Each interaction and paragraph is laced with sexual tension. The story is full of innuendos and images that show us how Ada grew up and there is considerable time spent on character development.
Seeing Double explored the world of pleasure and pain. What each meant to the person giving or receiving it. The book pushed my comfort level and made me look at this alternative way of living. I had to set aside what I considered ‘normal’ and live in Karen’s world while she shared her creativity. As I continued down the rabbit hole I found the story is about more than the sexual tension and encounters. It’s the excitement and thrill of doing something you’re not sure you should. It’s hearing the small voice and telling yourself, ‘why the hell not’. The story has a great ebb and flow that makes for an easy read. Karen is known for pushing the boundaries and for her unsettling style of fiction, and this describes Seeing Double to a tee. If you can get past the overt sexual and explicit content the story is pretty enjoyable.
Length: 232 Pages
Publisher: Grey Matter Press
Release date: July 25, 2017
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Even monsters can love…
A trio of expats living in Asia form a tenuous bond based on mutual attraction, sexual obsession and the insatiable desire to experience the deadliest of thrills.
As their relationship matures, the dangerous love triangle in which they’ve become entwined quickly escalates into a series of brutal sexual conquests as they struggle to deal with lives out of control and the debilitating psychological effects of mental and physical abuse.
Known for her distinct brand of unsettling fiction, author Karen Runge is at the top of the modern horror game in this, her premiere novel. SEEING DOUBLE is a beautifully evocative and stunningly dark coming-of-age exploration of human sexuality and the roles of masculinity and feminism, polyamorous relationships, social and psychological isolation, and the humiliation of ultimate betrayal.
Karen Runge, biography
Karen Runge is a horror writer, sometimes an artist, and teaches adults English as a second language. Several of her short stories have been published in her collection Seven Sins. And two of her short stories appear in Grey Matter Press anthologies Savage Beasts and Death’s Realm. Jack Ketchum once told her: “Karen, you scare me.”