The Laughter of Strangers reviewed by the Los Angeles Times


Wow. I’m speechless. Jim Ruland reviewed my latest novel, The Laughter of Strangers, for the Los Angeles Times Sunday Book Review. Not only that, it’s a positive review! I don’t like using exclamation points but, in this situation, it calls for one. Here’s a particularly flattering paragraph from the review:

“EVERYTHING YOU SAY, I HEAR. EVERYTHING I HEAR, YOU DREAD”: Like a ringside announcer who knows the outcome of the fight before it commences, the voice taunts Sugar’s wandering mind and erratic attention.
Seidlinger avoids the clinch of genre fiction that tells us boxing novels should be brooding and atmospheric tales. “The Laughter of Strangers” delivers a combination of psychological horror and strangeness that would not be out of place in a David Lynch film. Seidlinger’s weird new fight fiction suggests that perhaps the best place for boxing contests isn’t in the ring but between the pages of a book.

Click here for the full review.

My Pet Serial Killer reviewed at Word Riot

My Pet Serial Killer reviewed at Word Riot

“This is a book you will love, even if it seems like everything you want to avoid. I read this book in one day, in two sittings, addicted to the prose, its conversational tone at such odds with its wild content.

“This is serial killer fiction as it has never been done before. It is maddening and dark and twisted and yet somehow so much fun to read.

“Just dive in and enjoy the twisted ride.”

Click here for the full review

(Hot Stuff) Crapalachia by Scott McClanahan

NOTE: The following is a truncated version of the full review found at Heavy Feather Review.


With every sentence penned, he is recording a side of history that would otherwise go unaddressed. Scott speaks of the many faces of family while fearlessly pointing out the darker lines around the eyes we often disregard as a bad day, a bad decision, with catch-all excuses and idle sympathies.

McClanahan views happenstance with uniquely tragic sort of eye, the focus being on who committed suicide, who got their toes cut off by a lawnmower, rather than who survived and who has all of their toes. It might be melodramatic, a glass-half full kind of mentality but you aren’t seeing the point: It’s the narrative material we all fixate upon. No one would watch a reality TV show where all we see is one perfectly happy Pleasantville. Fuck that.

This book is evidence of the fact that McClanahan would live through the treacherously bad times and still manage to bring that big grin around and wide. He’ll say “CURE FOR DEPRESSION” and he’ll show you what’s up. How to do it. How to keep from letting a bummer bring you down.

I don’t waste any time trying to discern between which parts of Crapalachia are true or not; set together as a singular entity, family history as Crapalachia, it is all true, and every single word of it must be read.

Fiction. Nonfiction. It doesn’t matter. We live through it.

We live through all of it.

My Pet Serial Killer reviewed at Heavy Feather Review

A new review of My Pet Serial Killer was published today at Heavy Feather Review and it’s got some really humorous lines. We’re talking really playful. Cassandra Gillig did a great job reacting to the gore and the transgressive qualities of the novel with lighthearted humor.

I’ve quoted a few:

“But Seidlinger is not overcome by an urge to pander to the cliches of genre fiction; he is a literary man.”

“So yes, every single grad student is crazy and plotting your death! They are still mad about their GRE scores! They will never stop being mad about job placement! Don’t trust them! (Thankfully most grad students do not possess more physical strength than the ability to lift a small crate of oranges.)”

“Seidlinger’s work shows a steady fascination with the arduous yet too human task of composing and managing the public manifestation of one’s private life.”

“Clearly such a realistic portrait of a serial killer couldn’t be penned by someone who hasn’t killed. If you see Michael J Seidlinger at AWP or something, be very very cautious; he has killed before and he will kill again.”

For the full review, click here. It’s a fun one!

My Pet Serial Killer reviewed at ChiZine’s Chiaroscuro

My Pet Serial Killer reviewed at ChiZine’s Chiaroscuro

Gabino Iglesias reviewed My Pet Serial Killer and had quite a bit of really good (really flattering) things to say about the book. Here are some of my favorite lines from the review:

With My Pet Serial Killer, Seidlinger has once again brought to the table the elements that make his work so enjoyable and then taken a step further: he’s reinvented the serial killer thriller.

A strange relationship blossoms and, although it’s clear who the killer is, soon dependency, obsession, and psychological punishment blur the line between victim and aggressor. Claire has what she wants and provides the killer, whose work gets noticed and earns him the name the Gentleman Killer, with what he needs.

My Pet Serial Killer walks the line between a thriller and a horror novel.

Social critique and the taste of human flesh seldom mixes together as well as they do in My Pet Serial Killer. Michael J. Seidlinger has a knack for revamping genres, and this book is entertaining proof of that.

Also, the book is available now for purchase here, here, or here