Blog Post, Review

13 Days of Horror | Day Eight | Night of the Mannequins by Stephen Graham Jones

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Content warnings for: Blood, death, murder, violence
Representation:

As an auto-buy author, I can’t get enough of Stephen Graham Jones and how he builds horror into your everyday. Stephen Graham Jones moves between folk horror and grindhouse horror with complete ease, offering a unique look at horror you won’t find anywhere else.

This novella wonderfully captures the essence of carefree lazy summer holidays with your friends. Sawyer and his friends love playing pranks on people, and especially each other. When they came across a mannequin, they knew they had the ultimate helper for their pranks. As Night of the Mannequins opens, Sawyer and friends have decided to prank Shanna at the movie theatre she works at. Smuggling ‘Manny’ in, they put him together and wait in anticipation for a staff member to approach him and ask for a ticket.

This is where the whole nightmare starts for Sawyer, as Manny isn’t discovered, in fact Manny goes missing over the course of the film. Sawyer won’t admit it to his friends, but he knows what he saw. He saw Manny get up and leave, walking all by himself. It all feels like something is just wrong, and that feeling doesn’t leave him, especially when his friends start dying.

Stephen Graham Jones manages to take the mundane that everyone goes through in their life and breath horror into everything corner. Night of the Mannequins captures the feeling of your school holidays coming to an end, as your once tight-knit group start growing apart and adds a sense of dread throughout.

This thrilling ride is excellently told in a novella length, but it doesn’t skimp on the horror, heart or dread. Night of the Mannequins leaves you questioning what is real from start to finish.

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