Violet Eyes by John Everson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Their bites are more than deadly…
The small town near the Everglades was supposed to offer Rachel and her son a fresh start. Instead it offered the start of a nightmare, when an unknown breed of flies migrated through the area, leaving painful bites in their wake. The media warned people to stay inside until the swarm passed. But the flies didn’t leave. And then the radios and TVs went silent.
That’s when the spiders came. Spiders that could spin a deadly web large enough to engulf an entire house overnight. Spiders that left stripped bones behind as they multiplied. Spiders that, like the flies, sought hungrily for tender flesh… through Violet Eyes.
Rachel and her son Eric are starting a new life near the Everglades, but they don’t have much time to settle in before an infestation of flies are reported, people start getting bit, communications go out, and the spiders begin to take over, multiplying, and killing everything they touch.
John Everson’s Violet Eyes spun a web around me and I couldn’t, nay, I didn’t, want to free myself from it. Spiders are no friend of mine and I can stomp on them when needed, but the spiders in Violet Eyes are unnaturally aware, they can scent you, for you are their prey. There was almost an Alien (the movie) vibe to the way these spiders used a human’s body.
From the beginning beach scene until the ending, Everson’s outstanding descriptive skills allowed a movie-like screening of the spiders and their counterparts to play in my mind which kept me brushing away invisible creepy-crawlies. I was enraptured by these life-stealing things.
I love the way John gave us full exposure of the
lives these critters were taking, and the creative scenarios their demise took place in. There was one scene with two young brothers out playing catch that was hard to read because it was written so well and you knew, you just knew. Everson made me feel for the characters, whether they were in it for a few paragraphs or a few pages.
I wondered how the author was going to carry the story with such a terrifying and all-consuming enemy, but I needn’t have worried. At first I felt a sense of hopelessness for everyone, but Rachel and friends were not to be counted out.
The ending. It was…just perfect.
I really feel that this is the best story I have read by Mr. Everson and I highly recommend you give this read a try.