Published by Orbit on March 1, 2016
Genres: Fiction, Thrillers, Psychological, Occult & Supernatural, Supernatural, Ghost
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"Ingenious and funny . . . Magnificent." -- Alan Moore, creator of Watchmen and V for VendettaJack Sparks died while writing this book.It was no secret that journalist Jack Sparks had been researching the occult for his new book. No stranger to controversy, he'd already triggered a furious Twitter storm by mocking an exorcism he witnessed. Then there was that video: forty seconds of chilling footage that Jack repeatedly claimed was not of his making, yet was posted from his own YouTube account. Nobody knew what happened to Jack in the days that followed -- until now. "Wow. Seriously hard to put down." -- M. R. Carey, author of The Girl With All the Gifts
The Last Days of Jack Sparks is definitely an odd book. The supernatural is a powerful force to be reckoned with but Jack Sparks ego revolves around the sun. if you are going into this book expecting a terrifying book, you are going to be disappointed. The scenes within are expected especially if you mess around with the paranormal and exorcisms. It is essentially a satirical/ black comedy novel. The destruction of Jack’s ego. The result of not having an open mind. Its karma coming back to bite him on the ass. He’s gone through his entire life treating everyone close like rubbish…well he’s about to get a taste of his own medicine.
I did feel the first 75% of the book was slow paced and I had a very hard time connecting with Jack Sparks. He was dreary and ultimately, I felt the book translated more as tragic rather than funny. It’s quite sad that a person can get to a point in their life that social media and the amount of followers and likes that they receive is more important than maintain healthy relationships with those around him. Perhaps this is the world that we now find ourselves living in, but it is deeply unsettling.
The Last Days of Jack Sparks centres around the man in the title, Jack Sparks. This is the story that Jack left behind. It is the ultimate unreliable narrator. Everything contradicts Jacks own thoughts and experiences of the events that led up until the end game. Different case studies, interviews, and evidence – two completely different narratives. Jack is the ultimate sceptic. His mind is closed and is unwilling to open it up. In his eyes everything has an explanation and is unwilling to consider any inexplicable options. He is the original ego-maniac.
Jack Sparks makes no bones about his lack of objectivity. He puts absolutely no stock in ghosts, the supernatural and god or the devil. An atheist witnessing an exorcism… picture it – rural Italy on Halloween. He ridicules it and tweets sarcastic comments through-out. The flack you gets online from his behaviour is surprising for him…but it is only the start of his trouble. A disturbing YouTube video appears and disappears from his channel. This makes him delve even further into the occult in search of an answer…it turns out he should never have searched for an answer.
The Last Days of Jack Sparks had plenty of great moments. The ending did genuinely blow me away. The ending was everything that I had hoped that the rest of the book could have been. I felt that the story dragged a bit from the moment he arrived in LA until everything changed and the ending kicked it into the high gear. This was the point when I really had a greater appreciation for the story. The little Easter eggs began to make sense. This was the element of a horror story I love and needed elements of this formula dotted throughout the story to make it really work.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Hello! I’m a British author and scriptwriter, with a background in journalism.
I’m the writer of the terrifying Orbit Books novel Ghoster, which was released in October 2019. Before that, I wrote The Last Days Of Jack Sparks, the Lionsgate feature film Stormhouse, various Doctor Who things, a Friday The 13th novel and script-edited the 2012 Peter Mullan film The Man Inside.
2018 saw me co-author the book Inside Black Mirror with Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones.
Check out my collection of 30 interviews I did as a rock journalist, gathered in From The Front Lines Of Rock.
I run two YouTube channels: a fun retro affair and a second one about writing and isolation in the age of coronavirus.
Work-related enquiries should go to my UK literary agent Oli Munson at AM Heath. See Contact Form.
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