Scott Snyder teaches creative writing at Columbia University and his debut collection of short stories is a bit strange and more than a little deranged. This doesn’t make the book bad. In fact, Voodoo Heart is quite good. You never know where his characters are going to end up or what they’re capable of doing.
In “Dumpster Tuesday,” we find a Wall Street trader now guarding a dumpster outside a pawn shop in Florida. He’s traveled there, searching for his girlfriend who ran off with a country music singer. He’s got his spear gun all ready once he finds them.
“Blue Yodel” is about an employee who works for Niagara Falls. His job is to watch for jumpers, but now he’s mostly chasing after a blimp in his car. His girlfriend escaped from him on it, but now she’s throwing personal objects from the blimp so he can keep tracking her.
“Wreck” shows us a sporting goods salesman having an unlikely affair with a famous actress in hiding after a deforming surgery. The story is romantic at first, but turns violent as the actress begins to heal.
In the title story, a young engaged couple buys a rambling old house next to a women’s prison and their loving relationship starts to change when one of them becomes obsessed with an inmate at the prison who’s a serial killer.
The seven stories in Voodoo Heart are whimsical, disturbing, sinister and dark – all at the same time. You’ll find yourself turning the pages faster and faster and wishing there was more. To say the least, this is a very original read.