Retro Reading: The Carnival by Eric Morse
Jason takes on Carnie's at Crystal Lake
Something about carnivals at night has always been intriguing and when I found the third installment of the Camp Crystal Lake novels aptly titled The Carnival I couldn't wait to read it.
Sure it's for young readers but author Eric Morse really heightens your senses while reading it. He's written it so you can almost hear the vendors enticing you to play games and the typical carnival music.
With this installment, a shady carnival comes to Crystal Lake and sets up camp on the abandoned site of the death camp. Truck driver Mitch Deever's dog, Stump, gets away and unearths Jason Voorhees' infamous hockey mask. As in the previous novels, the mask takes possession of Mitch and at this carnival, people will be screaming for their lives.
With it being summer, Maxi Wagner and her friends, Wendy and KC come across the carnival flyer. She tells the girls that she heard Jason's mask is buried out there and she wants to go to the carnival. The other girls don't want anything to do with Camp Crystal Lake but in the end, they end up going.
Maxi's a year older than the other two and since they're all in summer school, Maxi runs the girls. Basically, she's the typical Friday the 13th character from the films. She's also a flirt who has their teacher fantasizing about her. Maxi knows how to run people's lives.
One thing that makes this novel good is Morse has not only continued with Jason's traits passed onto Mitch Deever, but he also turns the campground into another murderer. The carnival itself has a shady reputation, but factor in the evil lurking around the camp then the carnival itself will become an ultimate bloodbath. Morse does what the films didn't. He serves up multiple victims and the action is nonstop.
I think this is possibly the best novel out of the series. It has a great plot and plenty of action. If this novel had been turned into a movie, I'm pretty sure that it would have been a blockbuster.