The Handyman Method: A Story of Terror

Gallery/Saga. Aug. 2023. 304p. ISBN 9781982196721. $27.99. HORROR
Cutter (The Troop) and Sullivan (The Marigold) have come together to build a tale that’s a brutal yet modern twist on the haunted-house story. Trent Saban is looking toward the future. He may be currently on sabbatical from his job, but Trent and his family are moving into a new home in a burgeoning housing development. A crack in the wall leads him to seek home-repair advice from the videos of Handyman Hank, but Hank’s advice soon goes from how to fix cracks in the wall to how to discipline Trent’s wife Rita and their son Milo. What began as Trent’s efforts to make his house (and his life) perfect could lead to the collapse of his entire family. This supernatural tale of a fixer-upper that tears down a family follows Trent’s slow and inexorable descent into the fetid depths of toxic masculinity, from his obsession with power tools and large pickup trucks to his fixation on young Milo’s perceived manliness.
VERDICT This story is full of moments, from the descriptive body horror to the cringeworthy acts committed by this seemingly normal family, that will burrow under readers’ skin.
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