Customer Review

Reviewed in the United States on December 14, 2018
Madhouse by Miguel Estrada is a 58-page short story available for USD 0.00 as a purchase (not KU) from Amazon. The very short story will have a very short review. Anything more would be an automatic spoiler.

Lucas was a clever kid. At eleven-years-old, he liked to play games with his parents. Every afternoon coming home from school, he would sneak into his house in a different way to surprise his parents. They never knew where they might find him in the house. That kind of behavior inevitably led to Lucas discovering a secret about his parents. He knew from other kids the meaning of what he heard from his parents. He did not intend to live the life his friends did, one week with mom, one weekend with dad. It was time for action. Lucas would run away from home. His mom and dad would come together in an effort to find him. Only then would Lucas come home.

Running away from home was the easy part. But where was he running to? It was only the first night and he needed to find shelter. He knew never to accept a ride from a stranger, but the woman appeared friendly and acted like someone’s mom. When she offered to help, Lucas got in the car.

And woke up on a narrow bed with his hands cuffed. He didn’t see the woman next. There was a huge, hulking guy with a knife who promised that he and Lucas (and the knife) would soon have fun. The giant seemed to move in a funny way, hesitantly and slowly. Lucas didn’t immediately know that the giant was drunk. When he left, presumably for more liquor, it was time for Lucas to begin his escape attempt.

What follows is a cat-and-mouse game between Lucas, the giant man, the nice lady who has lost her niceness, and a scarecrow wraith of an old woman who might be the giant’s mother. There are several graphically described violent action scenes which the author seems to believe warrant a trigger warning about violence. I disagree but this is a genre I read often.

Reader suspension of disbelief is required when it comes to the actions of Lucas but the overall short story should please and surprise readers. At this price, what can you lose? The believability of many Lucas actions caused me to give three Amazon stars. More would have been unbelievable.
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