Episode 3.12 – The Imposition of Normalcy with Mike Thorn

Welcome to the Ink Heist podcast, which is devoted to dark genre fiction, featuring hosts Rich Duncan, Shane Douglas Keene, and a whole bevy of authors and other interesting guests for your listening and enlightening pleasure. We are a very irreverent, often linguistically explicit broadcast so we highly recommend you use discretion when listening around easily influenced young ones or anyone who is easily offended. We would like to thank the band Secret Smoker for allowing us to use their song “Crushed by Air” to kick-off and finish the podcast.

This week, we’re excited to have the opportunity to welcome Mike Thorn to the show to celebrate the release of his latest novel, Shelter for the Damned, which is out now through JournalStone Publishing! Looking for a secluded place to hang out and smoke cigarettes, teenagers Mark, Adam, and Scott stumble across a mysterious shack in a suburban field. The friends had been through this area countless times, but this is the first time they remember seeing the shack. Adam and Scott aren’t all that impressed, but the first time Mark enters The Shack, it feels like the perfect escape and he already feels the pull of The Shacks energy. Over time, Mark realizes there is an intelligence residing in The Shack, one that expects things from Mark in exchange for the refuge it provides from his life. As Mark grows more dependent on The Shack, his life starts changing in ways he could’ve never imagined. Shelter for the Damned is loaded with nightmarish scenes and if the idea of a dark coming-of-age story meeting Kathe Koja’s The Cipher intrigues you, this is definitely the book for you.

Throughout the course of the episode, we talked about Shelter for the Damned, his influences, coming of age narratives, toxic masculinity, suburban horror, Stephen King’s Dreamcatcher, possession films and so much more. We had a lot of fun recording this episode and hanging out with Mike. We hope you guys enjoy the conversation as much as we did!

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