24 May 2019

Review || Grey Skies by William Becker



Roman Toguri finds himself burying the body of a nun in Boone, North Carolina. As the skies darken and it begins to 
storm, he is forced to shove the corpse into his trunk and take it home for the night, unaware of the torment that playing God will bestow upon him.


 

The story begins with a man and a body — not the most auspicious way to start your day, is it? The problem is he doesn't remember how she came to be dead. He remembers that she is a friend of his ex-wife, but has no idea what happened to her. In a case of extreme panic, he decides to bury her himself. (I mean, really, hiding the body is the first thing you should do if you are innocent.) However, in the pouring down rain, he realizes this is not to be and places her in the trunk of his car to be disposed of later at home. It seems like a random happenstance and one during which you feel for Roman, alone, afraid, and extremely paranoid. From that moment, we descend with Roman into a place of madness...or is it?
Coiled in hallucinations and delusions, it's challenging at first to discern whether what Roman is encountering is true life, a paranormal encounter of sorts, or subjective decay. Whatever the cause, you find yourself emphasizing with Roman. He appears to be an amiable character that is clearly undergoing a difficult time, and whether that's of his own devices or not doesn't really seem to sway sentiment either way. Roman is naively ensnared in his own personal horror and he is frantically searching for the way out. It's only as the novel progresses that you start to consider that there may be a darker significance to Roman's fever dreams. 

This is one of those books where you have to follow Alice down the rabbit hole to eventually discover the truth. Everything is weird and nothing makes sense as if you're in some twisted funhouse wrong side up or trapped in a recurring nightmare from which you can't wake. Grey Skies is a twisty, winding inclination into insanity and it's only in the last few pages that you finally, finally, receive your answer to the original burning question: Who killed the nun?




William Becker is an 18-year-old horror author with a mind for weirder sides of the universe. With an emphasis on complex and layered storylines that tug harshly on the reader to search for deeper meanings in the vein of Silent Hill and David Lynch, Becker is a force to be reckoned within the horror world. His works are constantly unfathomable, throwing terror into places never before seen, while also providing compelling storylines that transcend the predictable jumpscares of the popular modern horror.

His first novel, WEEPING OF THE CAVERNS, was written when he was 14. After eight months of writing, editing, and revising, the story arrived soon after his 15th birthday. During the writing sessions for his debut novel, he also wrote an ultra-controversial short story known as THE WHITE SHADE that focused on the horrors of a shooting. Living in a modern climate, it was impossible for THE WHITE SHADE to see the light of day. Following a psychedelic stint that consisted of bingeing David Lynch movies, weird art, and considering the depth of the allegory of the cave wall, he returned to writing with a second story, THE BLACK BOX, and soon after, his second novel, GREY SKIES.