Sunday, June 10

Gil’s All Fright Diner – A Lee Martinez

Duke and Earl are on a road trip in a rusty grey truck that’s seen better days – limp spools of a Hank Williams cassette are all that remain of a working sound system, and they’re just about out of beer and gas when they stop at Gil’s Diner, in the middle of a nowhere little town. Gil’s proprietor, Loretta, has just finished serving Duke (Earl ate earlier) when, much to Loretta’s annoyance, the diner’s attacked by zombies.
Fortunately for Loretta, who’s running out of ammo, Duke and Earl are, respectively, a werewolf and a vampire, and more than equipped to defeat a couple (or nine) zombies. Rockwood’s always been a bit strange, but attack by zombie is new, and over the past wee while it’s been zombies every day – well, night. As Earl points out, all 181 of the risen dead storming the diner could be coincidence, but it could also mean she’s being targeted. In exchange for a few night’s board, a hundred bucks, and another slice of Loretta’s apple pie, Duke and Earl agree to stick around for a bit.
Martinez has crafted an above average humorous fantasy novel – the characters are engaging and defy stereotype (“Just ‘cuz I’m a vampire you think I’ve got me a neck fetish… I mean, I like to eat, and I like getting laid. Just because I am what I am, that doesn’t mean I like doing both at the same time… Probably get a cramp or sumthin’”), the plot is interesting, unpredictable and a lot of fun to read:
Wacky Willie had added the ‘Deluxe’ [to the name of his minigolf course] when finally ridding the thirteenth hole of a stubborn family of bats after a great and terrible struggle that would forever be known as “The Fearsome Bat War of Rockwood County” to Willie, but was usually referred to as “That Time Willie Had To Get Rabies Shots” by everyone else.
- Alex

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