David Wong's What the Hell Did I Just Read? is one of those books where the title says so much. You do walk away with pretty much that thought in your head, along with a feeling of extreme gratitude and sore abdomen muscles from laughing so much. It's a crazy roller coaster of a ride, and believe me, you want the ticket!
In the Midwestern city of Undisclosed (it's not the real name, just what the author calls it so he doesn't have to say its real name), friends John and David and David's girlfriend Amy fight evil. But it's not the kind of evil you can name. Or can see. Or can talk about without sounding like you need to be locked up in a padded room with very strong psychotropic pharmaceuticals. But he's going to tell you about it anyway, because as soon as you pick up the book, you're sucked into his world.
In this world. a little girl has gone missing. She was with her father, he turned around, and she was gone. Just like that. The police have no leads, so they called John, and John called David (Amy was at work at the call center, the only consistent income they get, so the guys started the investigation without her). John took the time before his public indecency trial later that day and David woke himself up from the floor of his museum of (aka, spare room full of) supposedly haunted items, and they went to the dad's house to investigate.
What follows is a series of bizarre and creepy experiences that cannot be explained or understood, from phone calls sent from an iPhone buried under a long-abandoned warehouse to a fictional theme park named after a Korean porn star to the use of '80s power ballads to disarm demons (although as a child of the '80s, I think that part makes sense). What the Hell Did I Just Read? is a bowl of ramen made with supernatural tropes, sarcasm, lots of curse words, demons, a prosthetic hand that looks like a robot pretending to be human, junk food, nudity, imagined sex, and a bevy of weapons, some legal and some not.
This book isn't for everyone. Like I said, lots of curse words (if you couldn't tell from the title). But if you liked Peter Clines 14 or Edgar Cantero's Meddling Kids or Grady Hendrix's Horrorstor, then you need to add David Wong to your TBR. This is the third book in the series that began with John Dies at the End, so you can start here and go back or start there and go forward, whatever you like. But start reading David Wong. And if you get scared, just play Jon Bon Jovi's "Living on a Prayer" in the background. That will scare the demons off, for sure.
Galleys for What the Hell Did I Just Read? were provided by St. Martin's Press through NetGalley.com, with many thanks.