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Published by Valancourt Books on October 28, 2016
Genres: Dark Fiction, Ghost, Horror
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All should have been well for Colin and his English bride -- but his twin brother, David, sensed trouble. Growing obsessed, David made his way to England to calm his fears -- instead he found an...
Colin and his wive were dead -- victims of ghastly violence. Their seemingly serene cottage seethed with an aura of murder, madness, and betrayal. Overpowered by the evil, David soon embarked on a...
JOURNEY INTO THE MACABRE.
Suffocatingly, the presence grew...grew to a malevolent force trying to kill David's fiancee...grew until David himself was a helpless prisoner of unholy passion!
David has an ominous feeling that his twin brother Colin is in serious danger so he leaves the US and heads off to England to see what’s what. He discovers terrible things have indeed occurred. As he attempts to figure out exactly what has happened, he finds himself residing temporarily in Colin’s gorgeous cabin and meeting some interesting characters along the way who clue him in on Colin, Colin’s wife and the home’s ominous past. He is left to ferret out the rest of the secrets on his own. He is tenacious. I would’ve been scurrying back home after a few events but that’s just me.
This book was a beautiful example of the atmospheric, slow burn ghost story. Why it isn’t better known is beyond me. It was leagues better than most of the recent novels I’ve read. It actually gave me the creeps a time or two and that almost never happens.
It is a product of its time though (the 70’s). David is one of those stubborn guys who keeps everything to himself (oooh, how that makes me crazy!) and tells the love of his life next to nothing. I’d strangle a guy like that in real life or at the very least drive him crazy with my questions but here it works well enough. I suppose if he shared everything things would’ve ended very differently and I thought the ending was dark perfection.
The characters are engaging and some of the dialogue between David and his love just hit me in all the right ways.
“You could bring me a good book.
Right, I’ll bring you a good book. Your usual taste and nothing to get you too excited. Just sex, lust, rape, mayhem . . .
And murder, she finished for me.”
I listened to this book as an unabridged audio and you will feel that ominous feeling of dread that accompanies David wherever he goes as soon as the narrator begins to speak. His voice seems made for this kind of story.
I can’t tell you any more without spoiling everything for you. I hate when that happens so I am stopping here. Just know that the buildup is slow and worth the wait. You are left, just as David is, to attempt to make sense of the strange goings-on occurring at the beautiful cabin. I didn’t figure it out before the reveal but I’m not very good at these things. If you like an old-fashioned, get under your skin ghost story listen to the audio or read the book. I don’t think you’ll be sorry.
About Bernard Taylor
Bernard Taylor was born in Swindon, Wiltshire, and now lives in London. Following active service in Egypt in the Royal Air Force, he studied Fine Arts in Swindon, then at Chelsea School of Art and Birmingham University. On graduation he worked as a teacher, painter and book illustrator before going as a teacher to the United States. While there, he took up acting and writing and continued with both after his return to England. He has published ten novels under his own name, including The Godsend (1976), which was adapted for a major film, and Sweetheart, Sweetheart (1977), which Charles L. Grant has hailed as one of the finest ghost stories ever written. He has also written novels under the pseudonym Jess Foley, as well as several works of nonfiction. He has won awards for his true crime writing and also for his work as a playwright. It was during his year as resident playwright at the Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch that he wrote The Godsend. There Must Be Evil, his latest true crime study, is to be published in England in September. (less)
Some people hug a teddy when the world gets to be too much. Me? I settle in with a scary book.