Tuesday, October 27, 2020

MY PRETTIES by Jeff Strand

I thought I knew what I was getting into when I cracked open My Pretties, but holy shit was I wrong. I expected a straight-forward serial killer thriller-diller, and while the book is that on a basic level, it is constantly surprising. It’s about two waitresses orbiting a depraved serial killer who gets his kicks off observing brunettes starving to death in cages. But the story took me in directions that I have never expected. I don’t want to go into details and spoil the discoveries so this review won’t be that long. But you should read it and see how deep the depths of depravity goes! I should have known that this book would be something else entirely because of the endlessly exciting author behind it, who’s anything but generic. 


Monday, October 12, 2020

THE HOUSE ON ABIGAIL LANE by Kealan Patrick Burke

There is something terribly wrong at 56 Abigail Lane.

The seemingly unremarkable house is now infamous due to a large number of unexplainable events that have occurred there and this novella details its mysterious history; yet another attempt to unlock its secrets. Much of this book's effect comes from its cold, academic tone, as if we were reading an impersonal thesis paper researching the subject and its 60-year history. It adds to the creepy factor because it presents these hair-raising events without emotion and it feels almost like watching a documentary.

I was home, in the dark, but not alone. The living room was a conspiracy of shadows and among them I could hear a man speaking backwards in a low voice.

I love how subtle much of the horror feels. Instead of floating ghosts or monsters chasing characters down the stairs, we get small occurrences, like mysterious disappearances, weird sounds, and creepy figures staring out of windows. It's enough to definitely raise some goosebumps. It's also impressive the way that Burke weaves American history in with the house's legacy, and the horror moves right along with it, giving us different lenses through which to study the house in each era, from the 1960's to present day. 

Another home run by a consistent author and a great way to kick off Halloween season!

We stepped over the threshold of an ordinary house in an ordinary neighborhood and over the threshold of modern knowledge. It is not a place steeped in old evil. It's a calamity of physics. There's a fissure, a gaping cosmic wound, a door to places we can't begin to fathom.