This book is a very surprising turn that Vincenzo Bilof makes, in terms of his writing. A hardcore bizarre writer by choice, he has produced a considerable body of work that is mostly comprised of intricately woven prose which, frankly, tends to polarize its readers. Seeing him make a turn to straightforward action packed grindhouse literature was an unexpected delight.
The story of Japanese Werewolf Apocalypse follows the clash of Ritsuko Kita and Edmund Grant, both of them leading tragic, shattered lives after the grisly murders of their parents. The paths they both follow only serve to propagate the vicious cycle of hatred, their actions directed by fate and shadowy, strange powers that seek to tear the world apart, drowning humanity in oceans of blood.
Alan M. Clark, the artist behind the brilliant cover of Pat Douglas’ The Old One and Cody Goodfellow’s Silent Weapons for Quiet Wars, once again delivers a stunning cover. There cover is colorful, almost dreamlike in quality, the kind of work that is to be expected by an artist of his ability.
Japanese Werewolf Apocalypse is a love letter to the works of Takashi Miike and Meiko Kaji, the great honchos of Japanese cinematic brutality, but also to the animatronic blood squib grindhouse b-movie legacy of the 80s. It’s an action-packed, brutal book that’s brilliantly written which seeks to appeal to both lovers of the subgenre and to newcomers to the Bizarro scene in general. It’s the right amount of strange, brutal and jaw-dropping at times. The only problem is that the narrative shifts that occur between chapters (specifically in flashbacks) might give a first-time reader severe narrative whiplash, but the payoff is well worth the trouble.