I was going to take photos to put in this review. The book we are talking about, The Last Projector by David James Keaton, is one of the best looking novels I've ever seen. From the cover art, to the spine, to the new cinematic Broken River Books artwork, I think that the look of this thing alone should justify a purchase.
I'm not going to do that. You have Google, you can go to Amazon, you can see the photos for yourself and probably better ones than I could take. There's another reason though. I'm going to talk about the contents of this book. What I can't take a picture of. I can't take a picture because some of what is there isn't really there. But it is. Its more there than what is.
See how that sounds? Crazy. Insane. I sound like a hack that doesn't know what he's talking about. Maybe I am. Maybe I should just stop here.
Let me tell you a story though...
I had a nightmare. About this book. I have had this book on my shelf for some time and I've written earlier versions of this review which I felt didn't work. The Last Projector has been haunting me since I first picked it up. It haunts me even still, as I'm writing these words. What were we talking about? The nightmare...
The book was full of slugs and worms. Crawling, inching out of its pages. The cover had seemed to come alive, not unlike the hallucinogenic ARC of this title with the animated cover. But it wasn't alive so much, not like the video I saw. It was active, moving, and undead. All of the elements of the cover art were twitching and turning, the slugs and worms creeping and crawling, trying to pull me into its abyss.
I don't know what the hell this book is about. A few times I thought I knew maybe. I suppose its about a lot of things. It's about love and death and movies and music and pornography and video games and people and demons and paramedics and, hell, I don't know. You read it. You have the nightmares and the elation and the confusion. You let this book take you and drag you in and leave you bruised and feeling that there's no way you can describe what the fuck it did to you but, dammit, you need other people to see it. You need them to know what you know. Its worth knowing.
David James Keaton is a mad genius. This is his first novel but its less a novel than an experience. Its David Foster Wallace and and David Lynch co-directing a video game adaptation of a musical adaptation of a sci-fi horror fantasy porno. Its getting over a heartbreak by going to the cinema all alone and taking communion with the silver screen while enveloped by the darkness.
Its not something you've seen or read or heard or felt before and its something you desperately need to get. Right. Now.