The mistake I made about Spore was to envisage it as a full-length novel when in fact it is a short story released as a standalone title, so in that respect we might consider it as a digital pamphlet.
Well, it’s all part of the cultural learning curve from established print publishing norms (an industry that, historically speaking, cut its teeth on the pamphlet and serialised forms), and an observation that has no direct bearing on this review except insofar of the ending.
No, no spoilers – if you want to know what happens, read it for yourself – but because I had perceived it as a novel it no doubt goes some way to explain why I felt it ended so abruptly. By the time I had gorged myself on its succulent two chapters it was over and I hadn’t had my fill by a long way. That doesn’t mean the ending was poor fare – it wasn’t – but that there is so much more potential to this story.
Said ending is pregnant with possibility, it leaves the reader wondering what happened next, which is often the sign of a good end. There is no sense of indifference, no sigh of relief, but a desperate cry for more! It speaks of a story that has gripped the reader right from the start, just as Spore does: it pulls you in and keeps you thoroughly entertained.
Woodhead has presented a finely-crafted horror story here, threaded with suitably dark humour that nevertheless refrains from ruining the macabre by over-stepping into comic territory. You’ll be horrified at Spore – for all the right reasons.
(review of free book)