Drag Thing: The Strange Case of Jackle and Hyde
Victor J. Banis
$13.49 or less from Amazon
Book blurb: “In Victor J. Banis’s hilarious gender-bender send-up of the mutant superhero genre, hetero Peter Warren’s ambition is to design women’s dresses, and his most secret desire is to wear them. His cop wife, Teri, also secretly longs to see her hubby “dressed up,” but hasn’t yet found the right way to tell him. And when Peter drinks the “wrong stuff,” he
turns into the eight-foot-tall monster called Drag Thing.
Add to the pot a pair of lesbian scientists working on a formula to make women stronger and more aggressive; a trio of hapless Homeland agents planning to purloin the formula for purposes of warfare, inept gangbangers who call themselves The Moes and kidnap pets for ransom, a nefarious villain who becomes The Owl, a horny Great Dane with lavender toenails, and a monster cat who turns into Franken-pussy, drag queen Lorelie Lee, Nurse Gladys Kravitz and her homophobic husband, Abner, and a naughty trick or two, and the result is a genuine treat for the reader!”
This is fast-paced and quirky. I had a hard time deciding how to classify this one. It has superhero elements, but the orientation and gender elements are mixed up. I think to make the reader realize that there is no such thing as normal and that in one way or another, we’re all queer. There are elements that may shock some readers, but I thought they were well-handled. My wife on the other hand that they were too over the top. She understood that they were probably there to make a political statement, but she thought the author went too far and could have accomplished in a better way. I don’t agree. They were over the top, but the whole novel is. That’s what makes this book so great. I loved the underlying political jabs, the Hulk-in-a-dress superhero, the bumbling idiot gang-bangers, and the stupid Homeland security agents.The characters are well-developed. The plot is strong and fast-paced. Also, I liked that Banis played with people’s perception of others and the muddy definition of what is queer and what is normal. This novel socks a great political punch, while entertaining the reader with a great story.
I recommend this to readers who won’t squirm when things go too far. I loved that normal and good was a little murky at times. I highly recommend this to lovers of superheroes stories and other readers that want to read something totally unexpected.