KIERAN SHEA’s fiction has appeared in dozens of venues including Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, Thuglit, Dogmatika, Word Riot, Plots with Guns, Beat to a Pulp, Crimefactory, and Needle: A Magazine of Noir well as in some beefy-looking anthologies most of which will make you question the tether of his shiny, red balloon. To his self-deprecating astonishment he's also been nominated for the Story South’s Million Writers Award twice without sending the judges so much as a thank you note. He co-edited the satiric transgressive fiction collection D*CKED: DARK FICTION INSPIRED BY DICK CHENEY and his debut novel KOKO TAKES A HOLIDAY is out now from Titan Books. Kieran divides his time between 38°58′22.6″N- 76°30′4.17″W and 39.2775° N, 74.5750° W.


Friday Forgotten Books - M31: A Family Romance

Can't do it. Words won't work. Going for the military-style checklist.
  1. UFOs (Check)
  2. Cult celebrities who believe they are aliens (Check)
  3. Lynchian violence, murder, and incest (Double check)
  4. Creepy, brutal prose, hypnotic and daring (Triple check)
I've been banging my head against the wall trying to remember the name of this novel when finally the sawdust drifted free.

M31: A Family Romance
by Stephen Wright.

Ladies and gentlemen, meet Ozzie and Harriet on bad peyote: Dash and Dot—cult icons of the E.T. - I WANT TO BELIEVE circuit, living out their obsessions and a shared psychosis in an empty church in the middle of nowhere America. Yes, maybe they are aliens from a planet called M31. Yes, maybe they have a spaceship (sort of). Yes, maybe this is a scathing satire of unnerving crash and broken bone.

When Gwen and Beale, UFO groupies, stumble into Dash and Dot's lair nothing is what it appears. It's worse. To wit, Publishers Weekly: "...the descriptions etch the particulars of this madness in exceptionally striking detail: the references to a world readers can recognize, seen through the perspective of the fringe-dwelling family, render our world of media and mass culture as alien as the unseen M31."

Just freaked me all kinds of hairy out. And that's my Friday forgotten book.