Published by Michaelbrent Collings on February 21, 2016
Genres: Crime, Dark Fiction, Fiction, Horror
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Getting in was easy. Getting out... will be another matter.
It was supposed to be just one more job: in, out, and millions the richer. But when four thieves break into THIS house, they discover the owners were ready. And waiting.
Now, the thieves find themselves in a deadly maze of traps. Traps designed not only to steal their lives, but their sanity.
The only way out is the front door.
The only way to get there is to survive.
And the only way to survive is to be willing to do anything, to suffer all... and to lose everything.
Michaelbrent Collings continues to impress me with the quality and range of originality in his novels. THE HOUSE THAT DEATH BUILT is no exception! He is able to incorporate a range of main characters, and flesh them out so well that the reader will feel they “know’ each of them. When you combine this with a tale of bloody, horrific occurrences, keeping the characters distinct individuals–each with their own motivations and emotions–is not an easy feat.
We begin with a group of thieves that like to rob the very wealthy. They feel that they are “Things of the night. Things that feed on the refuse of others, and the rot of a dying world.” ” . . . the marauders come. The invaders. Us.” Rob, the egocentric leader; Tommy, the muscle behind the group who thrives on violence; Kayla, Tommy’s sociopath sister; and Aaron, the only one who doesn’t want to be a part of them, but needs the money to pay for his beloved wife’s cancer treatments. Although Rob is clearly the brains behind the operation, it was Kayla’s character that really intrigued me: ” . . . she suspected sometimes . . . that something inside her mind was broken in some basic way . . . she was free in a way that no one else who was “broken” could ever be.”
One fateful night something goes horribly wrong.
Fast forward several years later, Rob is readying his group for what he feels will be their biggest score ever. Right from the start, Aaron–and soon, the others–are filled with a sense of unease . . . Then the games begin!
While continuing to evolve his characters, Collings takes us into a web of the most creative–and deadly–scenarios ever. At this point, it was a struggle to tear my eyes from the pages even for an instant! ” . . . because the only thing worse than knowing would be not knowing.” The emotions provoked and execution of scenes were simply brilliant, as were the interactions between the characters as things grew more complex. True colors began to show through, and the more I learned, the more I felt for each of them–even the worst of the group! Although there was gore and bloodshed enough to appease even the most die-hard horror fan, it was the steady build up of atmospheric tension–of what was going to come next–that made this a full five-star read for me. ” . . . This was a trap–a series of traps–designed for specific prey.”
One thing that I felt really resonated and magnified the idea behind this novel was a simple observation: ” . . . once made a choice. Never understanding the ripples that such decisions make in the still waters of our lives.”
Michaelbrent Collings remains on my list of “must-read” authors.