“Listeners, we are currently fielding numerous reports that books have stopped working. It seems that all over Night Vale, books have simply ceased functioning. The scientists are studying one of the broken books to see if they can understand just what is going on here. The exact problem is currently unclear, but some of the words being used include ‘sparks,’ ‘meat smell,’ ‘biting,’ and ‘lethal gas.’ For your own safety, please do not attempt to open a book until we have more information on the nature and cause of these problems. The city council has released only a brief statement, indicating that their stance on books has not changed, and that, as always, they believe that books are dangerous and inadvisable, and should not be kept in private homes.”

Dear reader:

You shouldn’t be reading this. I don’t even know how you got it or why it’s in print. The librarians were supposed to keep the invisible ink file in the archive of uncatalogued items.

Since you are reading this, you should inform the Sheriff’s Secret Police immediately. Better yet – say nothing. And drink to forget.

This book, and the story in it, could prove very dangerous for the security of Night Vale and its blissful inhabitants. A shape-shifting teenager is common in our desert oasis but you can imagine how hazardous it would be anywhere else. Even Desert Bluffs couldn’t handle such a delicate situation. And don’t even get me started on Steve Carlsberg.

This is the harrowing tale of a mother who must remember the man in the tan jacket, avoid a choir of angels who are most definitely not angels because they do not exist, and ignore the faceless old woman to rescue her son.

Do not read it.

“Welcome to Night Vale” is a wildly popular podcast that is based our a community radio show. It’s what you would get if A Prairie Home Companion broadcast from a town in the Twilight Zone.

From the publisher:

Located in a nameless desert somewhere in the great American Southwest, Night Vale is a small town where ghosts, angels, aliens, and government conspiracies are all commonplace parts of everyday life. It is here that the lives of two women, with two mysteries, will converge.

Nineteen-year-old Night Vale pawn shop owner Jackie Fierro is given a paper marked “KING CITY” by a mysterious man in a tan jacket holding a deer skin suitcase. Everything about him and his paper unsettles her, especially the fact that she can’t seem to get the paper to leave her hand, and that no one who meets this man can remember anything about him. Jackie is determined to uncover the mystery of King City and the man in the tan jacket before she herself unravels.

Night Vale PTA treasurer Diane Crayton’s son, Josh, is moody and also a shape shifter. And lately Diane’s started to see her son’s father everywhere she goes, looking the same as the day he left years earlier, when they were both teenagers. Josh, looking different every time Diane sees him, shows a stronger and stronger interest in his estranged father, leading to a disaster Diane can see coming, even as she is helpless to prevent it.

Diane’s search to reconnect with her son and Jackie’s search for her former routine life collide as they find themselves coming back to two words: “KING CITY”. It is King City that holds the key to both of their mysteries, and their futures…if they can ever find it.

My sincere thanks to someone secret at Harper Perennial for the review copy. I hope the intern who works there has recovered from the paper cut plague. 

Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: Harper Perennial (October 20, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0062351427
ISBN-13: 978-0062351425
Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.3 x 9 inches