Author: Jeff Strand
Publisher: Leisure Books
Publish Date: April 1, 2010
My Rating: 4/5
When Toby Floren was eight years old, he discovered a monster living in the woods behind his house. A ghastly, frightening creature with claws, fangs, and a taste for human flesh. As he ran out of the forest, Toby felt that he’d been lucky to escape with his life.
Years later, Toby finds comfort with the creature. It’s his own special secret–something that nobody else in the world knows about. Somebody to talk to. Somebody to confide in. Sure, Toby has concerns about his own sanity, but really, what boy wouldn’t want to be best friends with a monster in the woods, especially if he’s being tormented by bullies? The creature, who he names Owen, may be the answer to his problems…
As a boy, Toby saw a creature in the woods, but his parents convinced him it was all in his imagination. As a teenager, Toby saw the creature again. This time he decided to befriend the creature. They would have each other for friendship, but at a great cost.
A coming of age horror novel. Toby and his creature friend, who he names Owen, have a highly dysfunctional relationship. After all, Toby is a human and Owen is, well, not a human. He is sorta, maybe, Bigfoot’s cousin. Despite that, they manage to maintain a secret friendship over the span of 50 years, so that’s something.
This is an easy, fast read. Oddly, it touches on a variety of emotions. Sometimes depressing. Sometimes humorous. Often disturbing. Good for fans of horror that enjoy a little humor with their gore.