My debut novel, the Australian Shadows Award-winning 809 Jacob Street, is now available in paperback and digital formats from Amazon.
Listen to Joey Blue’s Barstool Eyes song.
Praise for 809 Jacob Street
WINNER OF THE AUSTRALIAN SHADOWS AWARD FOR BEST NOVEL (2013)
Nominated a Notable Indie Book of 2013 in the category of Page Turners – Shelf Unbound magazine’s writing competition.
“…I wasn’t quite prepared for how accomplished this little novel turned out to be. Evoking those stories of old with his motley crew of kids (1980’s horror fiction), Marty gives the reader a subtle coming-of-age tale while also delivering cerebral prose that becomes almost narcotizing after a while. Here, there is a slow build of tension that is somewhat effortless … as if 809 Jacob Street was a latter novel in the author’s resume.”
– Matt Tait – Hellnotes review
“Marty Young’s 809 Jacob Street dragged me through the gutter, and had me enthralled with every page. The story explores so thoroughly a nightmare of tortured emotions and madness that it’s hard to believe it isn’t autobiographical. The characters, especially Joey Blue, are that convincing. This is a writer cutting his own way through horror, and I can’t wait to see where his journey takes him. I, for one, will be watching from here on out, because he made me a fan with this book.”
– Joe McKinney, Bram Stoker Award-winning author of Flesh Eaters and Dead City
“By effectively blurring the line between the inner and outer worlds of its characters, 809 Jacob Street gives new life to the standard haunted house story. A dark and powerful tale of small-town paranoia, communal and personal terror, and the reality of monsters.
Young has produced a refreshingly hypnotic tale that blends Monster Squad and the small-town coming-of-age themes of Stephen King to his own dark and surreal ends.”
– Robert Hood – author of Immaterial and Fragments of a Broken Land: Valarl Undead
“You may think you’ve been here before. But, like the alleys that thread through sleepy, old Parkton, alleys that do not meet up with the residual centres of light and life, the concepts Young invites us to explore take us somewhere beyond. I can say little about what lies in the Monster House itself, only that this is a destination which lies very much in the journey. It is the way he turns the crossing of a small town into a Dantesque quest, that is the book’s delight.”
– Kyla Ward – Thirteen o’ Clock review
“This book gets scary… You need to buy this book, you need to get it. You need to read it, not only to support obviously local writers and publishers, but because it is a very good read.”
– The Witching Hour Paranormal Radio Show on 4ZZZ (Broadcast on Nov 2, 2013)
“Marty Young takes us inside the hearts and minds of people tortured by the monster house on 809 Jacob Street. This is a slow burning exploration of psychic terror that builds to a startling climax and the beginning of an even deeper mystery. Recommended!”
– Greg Chapman, author of The Last Night of October
“809 Jacob Street is a wonderful first novel for Marty Young and first release for new Publisher, Black Beacon Books. Highly recommended.”
– Frank Michaels Errington, Horror-Web.com
“Marty Young is a writer of rare talent. He manages to interweave the mundane and supernatural so skilfully you never see or feel the joins. He draws you outside the lines, behind the curtain, out of the blue and into the black, and does it with such grace and skill that it’s only in retrospect that you realise how dark your surroundings have become, how unfamiliar the landmarks are.”
– Kit Power, author of The Loving Husband and the Faithful Wife
Fourteen year old Byron James wishes he’d never been dragged to Parkton.
It’s a crazy sideshow of a town in the middle of damn nowhere, and he’s stranded there. To make matters worse, his two new friends – his only friends – turn out to be class rejects with an unhealthy interest in monsters. They want to discover the truth to the infamous monster house at number 809 Jacob Street.
Joey Blue is an old bluesman who fell into his songs and couldn’t find his way out again. Now he’s a Gutterbreed, one of the slinking shifting shadows haunting the town’s alleys. When an old dead friend comes begging for help, Joey’s world is torn apart. He is forced to stare down the man he has become in order to rescue the man he once was – and there is only one place he can do that.
The house on Jacob Street calls to them all, but what will they find when they open its door?
809 Jacob Street (and several forthcoming novels) is set in Parkton, a crazy sideshow of a town nestled in the foothills of the Coast Range, on the western edge of the Willamette Valley. Driving into town that first time (Welcome to Parkton, the Willamette’s Hidden Paradise, the sign says), the forested hills surrounding Parkton feel imposing, claustrophobic, like they were intent on swallowing the place and everyone in it whole, with the trees, the ancient Douglas-firs and oaks and pines, shuffling closer all the time to prevent escape.
And those wooded mountains of Oregon’s Coast Range loom large in the background, a reminder of what hills became, given enough time. This town has no chance.
There are trees everywhere too, like the advance party of a conquering army; maples with huge star-shaped leaves lining the main roads, their leaves a mix of green and gold, giant sequoias standing tall on corners…..
Strange things happen in Parkton, no doubt due to those 11 ancient, coppiced hazelnut trees that form a ring about town. Who planted them–and why?
Parkton was founded in 1853 by Charles F Longworth (Charlie, until he came into money through the goldrush of California in 1848-1855), who came west on the Oregon trail and took up a land claim, opened a general store, platted the land and surveyed a town site. No one knows why he called the place Parkton.
Earliest recorded history explains how the Kalapuya burnt the surrounding area for clearing, only the setting of future Parkton always remained untouched, with the fire bending around those hazelnut trees. It was cursed ground, they believed, a place the others still walked.
Somehow, The Symmes Institute, one of the leading scientific organisations in the world, is tied to the trees; they know the secret, they know where those trees lead, and it’s something they will kill to keep hidden.
But it’s not just the hazelnut trees; Parkton is filled with madness.
The northern end of Parkton has grown busier over the past couple of years ever since the new housing estate had been built, providing families with one thousand new homes nestled amongst rolling hills and forests of Douglas firs and oaks. Further north still, the road takes a tour though the forested foothills of the Coast Range before creeping past Parkton Asylum half an hour away. Perched atop a hill, the old hospital afforded its patients with a view over the town, to inspire or tease, it wasn’t clear, but also giving those in town a reminder of what lurked just in the distance.
…and there were stories about that place, too. Tales of experimental drugs, insulin shock therapy, even ghosts wandering the graveyard out back of the hospital, and the night time release of certain patients…
The residents of Parkton even have their own bogeyman, who lives out on Jacob Street. The parents use him to frighten the kids into behaving, least they be taken out that way and left for the Man of the House… It’s a threat the children take seriously. But why are the homeless drawn there–and how come so many homeless drift along the gutters of this town?
“Addiction” (Tales from the Mist, 2012) – short story
“A Monstrous Touch” (Dangers Untold, 2012) – short story
“Joey Blue and the Gutterbreed” (ASIM #48, 2010) – short story
809 Jacob Street (featuring Joey Blue, the old homeless bluesman who fell into one of his songs one day and never found his way out again)
He trudged on through the alleyways of Parkton, hiding from the world so he might suffer his embarrassment alone. He crossed empty streets and slipped down behind silent buildings, a solitary soul amongst a land of shadows.
There was a maze of alleys in this town, more than there should be for a place this size. It sometimes felt to him that he wasn’t in Parkton at all, that the town had hold of him but only by the coattails while he flapped and wailed in some other world…
Revelations (novel) – ever wonder why 11 coppiced hazelnut trees ringed town? And why old Dr Sam Reynolds creeps out at midnight to listen to the ground before each one? Dr Reynolds used to work at The Symmes Institute, a scientific organisation with a long, mysterious history linked to Charles F Longworth, Parkton’s founding father.
What was it that Longworth knew, and that The Symmes Institute will do anything to keep secret? Dr Reynolds knows, but will he be able to expose the truth before they get him–and will the Earth survive such a revelation?