Facial by Jeff Strand

Facial by Jeff Strand, Bizarro Fiction, 86 pages
Greg has just killed the man he hired to kill one of his wife’s many lovers. He’s now got a dead body in his office.

Carlton, Greg’s brother, desperately needs a dead body. It’s kind of related to the lion corpse that he found in his basement.

This is the normal part of the story.

From Jeff Strand, the author of Benjamin’s Parasite, The Sinister Mr. Corpse, and Fangboy, comes a tale that’s weird even by his standards.

 Facial. It’s not about what you’re thinking. Well, okay, part of it is...

Jeff Strand dips his whole body in the bizarro sub-genre with this one. Facial has Strand’s snarky sense of humor out in full force but damn is it ever weird. Flesh-eating face in the floor kind of weird. If that’s your thing read on.

Greg’s wife is cheating on him. Instead of confronting her, he hires a sarcastic hit man to off one of her lovers. Greg doesn't appreciate the hit man’s sarcasm, shoots him dead and saves himself some bucks. But now he’s stuck with a body.

Carlton arrives home to find the rotting corpse of a lion in his basement but wait things get worse and weirder. There's a voice coming out from under the lion, demanding human flesh, blood and bone. If Carlton doesn’t deliver, this face in the floor declares Carlton and his family will die. Carlton ponders for a second or two.

Screw it. I’d do it. My existing plans for today were: watch television, eat stale graham crackers with stale marshmallows, and cry a little…so why not? It was a break from the norm. I could quit at any time. I’d make it clear to the possible viewing audience that I was in on the joke. “All right,” I said. “I’ll do it.”

Fortunately Carlton’s bro Greg has a fresh corpse at the ready, eh?

Dismemberment and minor grossness follow, more faces grow out of the floor and they’re all hungry. It’s a good thing there are a lot of men out there who have done Greg wrong . . . or, really, just done his wife!

This was a weirdly entertaining story with enough sarcasm and dark humor to keep me happy. I’m giving it a 3 ½  because of the constantly switching first person point of view and the fact that all of the characters sounded eerily and confusingly similar. Even though each chapter clearly tells you who is going to be speaking, I still managed to mix them up because, again, the similarities, and I had to do some backtracking. Sort of frustrating after a bit.

*I received a copy of this book from Netgalley.


  1. OK. It does sound super bizarro but somehow, there seems to be some interesting parts to it as well. I think the faces in the floor are the hardest for me to grasp, but I love dark humor and snarky characters, so who knows, maybe I'll pick this one up one day!

    1. It's sooo weird! Jeff Strand writes some really weird stuff but this one takes the cake for strangeness.

  2. Hmm, I liked the switching up of first-person narrators, but I can see your point in that all of them shared the same deadpan sense of humor.

    1. I am easily confused and can't ever read in one sitting. I never do well with constantly changing POV's :(

  3. It is hard when the narrative switches like that and you are unclear who is speaking.

  4. Hmmm, that does sound different...lol.

  5. The Fireman is soooo long and I haven't dozed off so that's the mark of a good one for me!


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