Thursday, September 13, 2007

Mister B. Gone-Clive Barker

Mister B. Gone
Clive Barker
Harper Collins, Nov 2007, $24.95,248 pp.
ISBN 9780060182984

When the reader opens the book, the demon Jakabob Botch who is trapped insides begs his audience to burn the book so his miserable existence can come to an end. He begs, cajoles and entices before he finally begins the story of his life in the hope that such a gift will be sufficient for the reader to accept his fiery wishes.

He was born in the ninth circle of Hell to a wife beating drunkard married to a demon whore. When his Momma finds his journal pages where he writes what he would like to do to those who hurt him, she burns them and he falls into the blaze burning his eyelids, nose mouth and leaving scars on his visage. His father tries to kill him but both are trapped and taken to the World Above. Abused by his Pappy before they reach it, Mr. B. kills his Pappy and then escapes from those who want to use him before they sell him. He meets with the demon Quitoon who is masquerading as a knight and together they perpetuate great evil in the world. It is when Quitoon decides they should go to the Guttenberg home in Mainz in 1439 that Mr. B. learns of a secret concerning heaven and hell. Both sides don’t want him talking about it leading to the demon’s troubles becoming insurmountable.

The demon mythos as espoused by Clive Barker’s MISTER B GONE is fascinating. The ninth circle of Hell is garbage ooze below even the demonic food chain where the most unrepentant and incorrigible demons and sinners abide. The only demons with power and near immortal are those born by a mating between Lucifer and one of the First Fallen. Mr. B. is an enticing antagonist, so evil and beguiling that readers want to know his story. This is the perfect book to either read or burn on Halloween Night because it frighteningly centers on the charm of unrepentant evil.

Harriet Klausner

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