Booklist Review




Lansdale, who routinely crosses genres and attracts both mainstream and cult fans, delivers a story collection heavy on fantasy. Mad Dog Summer contains eight pieces ranging in length from story to novella. This is an eclectic array of yarns, some old, some new, most containing elements of fantasy. The centerpiece is "Mad Dog Summer," a novella that was later expanded into the Edgar-winning novel The Bottoms (2000). The remaining pieces range from a realistic turn-of-the-century tale about two boxers to a Dante-like mission to Hell for the un-Dante-like purpose of rescuing Satan. The strangest piece in the book has to be "The Steam Man of the Prairie and the Dark Man Get Down," in which we encounter the time traveler from Wells' The Time Machine, morphed into the vampire king of the Moorlocks.

— Elliott Swanson
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