KM – The Neighbor – Dean Koontz

Title: The Neighbor

Author: Dean Koontz

Series: Prequel to The City

Category: Action / Thriller / Supernatural

Length: 33 pages

My rating: 9.5/10

This is a short story/Kindle Single by Dean Koontz, as a prequel, or lead up, to the City. In itself, it is quite the spooky little tale. It tells of the struggles of Malcolm and Amalia, siblings, who have parents who would rather “talk to the walls than at each other”. Both musicians, they often seek solitude through practice. Until one night, Malcolm notices something strange going on at the abandoned building next door.

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KM – Asylum (The Birch Harbor Series #1) – Kristen Selleck

Title: Asylum

Author: Kristen Selleck

Series: yes

Category: Action / Thriller / Supernatural

Length: 382 pages

My rating: 8.3/10

Chloe Adams is an aspiring psychology student. Warned in advance about how her Professor can be an eccentric, she nevertheless becomes a TA for Professor Willard. However, her past holds some dark secrets. A new, bubbly roommate, a tiring position as TA, and a budding romance with the handsome, hockey player RA may all crash around her if they’re found out. But as her secrets come to light, much darker forces are at play around here, and if they have their way, she will hear them.

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KM – The Haunted – Michaelbrent Collings

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Title: The Haunted

Author: Michaelbrent Collings

Series: No

Category: Horror / Thriller / Supernatural

Length: 239 pages

My rating: 9.5/10

Sarah and Cap have recently purchased a new house and are starting to move in their belongings. Almost immediately, things start to happen. Some simply dismissed as items being misplaced because of pregnancy-brain from Sarah’s late term pregnancy, and others, completely inexplicable. The timeline follows them through the hours of horror spent in the house, that was vacant, but never empty.

 

This book was so amazingly well written. I felt like I was in the house with Sarah and Cap, and living their nightmare. The novel’s prologue was so enticing that I couldn’t wait to begin the story. Even those very first few pages had chills running down my spine.

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KM- Finding Oblivion – Alex Gulczynski

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Title: Finding Oblivion

Author: Alex Gulczynski

Series: Yes, sequel to Eustice

Category: Fiction/Horror / Thriller / Psychological

Length: 233 pages

My rating: 4/10

 

In this follow up to Eustice, the war is raging between Heaven and Hell, ravaging Purgatory while vying for mortal souls. Eustice is on a rescue mission for her lover who has been dragged to Hell by a demon, and Azrael is continuing to do nothing but wreak havoc on everything Eustice has come to know. She finds allies in unlikely places, and continues on her mission while trying to save the people most important to her.

 

I don’t usually writing scathing reviews, but this book was quite a disappointing follow up. The story line was decent, but the entire tone of the book was different than the first. Whereas the first book had a sense of seriousness to it, this one was full of cheesy one liners and flippant attitudes (relative to the situations). Not to mention the misuse of words and massive amount of typos. It took me 4 days to read what would normally take one day to finish, simply because I couldn’t take the story seriously, the failed attempt at humor made it boring, and the typos made it a real pain to read.

 

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KM- Eustice- Alex Gulczynski

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Title: Eustice

Author: Alex Gulczynski

Series: Yes, first novel in Reaper Corps

Category: Fantasy / Religious / Action

Length: 234 pages

My rating: 7/10

 

Imagine waking up, confused and with no memories of where you are or how you got there. A neat, ordered desk and an austere secretary barking orders. Everyone treating you like you’re an unwelcome guest.

This is how Eustice Jennings finds herself, awakening in Purgatory only to find she has no memories of her life or how she died. She’s recruited in to the Reaper Corps, where she makes allies and ones that may or may not be what they seem. The Celestials are hiding all kinds of secrets, Seraphs and Infernals alike. It’s all about to come crashing down around Eustice.

Quite an interesting look on Purgatory, definitely one I haven’t seen before.

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KM- False Memory – Dean Koontz

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Title: False Memory

Author: Dean Koontz

Series: No; standalone novel

Category: Fiction/Horror / Thriller / Psychological

Length: 768 pages

My rating: 8/10

 

Delve into the depths of mind control with Martie and her husband, Dusty. Both normal people, caught up in a scheme so dangerous and widespread that it could easily end their lives at a moment, or cause them to end someone else’s with no memory.

Meet Dr. Ahriman, a renowned psychologist who has created a program that allows him to program people, and use them for his bidding.

A long-standing feud, fraught with twists and turns, bring Martie and Dusty across Ahriman’s path, and leads to quite the thrilling adventure.

 

This was definitely one of my favorites that Koontz has produced. Not a new release, but one I haven’t come across before. It was a non-stop action novel with likable characters that made this hard to put down. 

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KM – Pet Sematary – Stephen King

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Title: Pet Sematary

Author: Stephen King

Series: No; standalone novel

Category: Fiction/Horror / Thriller

Length: 576 pages

My rating: 9/10

 

Growing up in a family that adores the macabre and horror movies, of course when I was younger, I saw Pet Sematary more times than I can count. However, I finally decided to read the book, which is a far deviation from my usual routine (book first, always). 

This was a very impressive work by King, as most of his usually are. It started a little slowly, but picked up quite quickly. There were very few lulls, and King was not as wordy as normal, though he still gave enough information to give the imagination a great image of what he was conveying. The characters were well thought out, well spoken, and through the 500+ pages, it felt as though you truly got to know the Creeds and the Crandalls. The novel can pull you in deep enough that you can almost hear the cry of the loons and feel the pull of the Little God Swamp.

Follow Louis Creed as he is exposed to, and later pulled to, an area in the woods that holds a power much darker than ever imagined. And let yourself think… “If I lost (insert important person in your life), what price would I be willing to pay to bring them back?” 

 

I am, of course, tempted to go on about how different the movie portrayal was from the actual novel, but I’m sure everyone who reads King and sees the movies based on his work are accustomed to the disappointment that the screen brings with it. King is truly a genius at storytelling, which is no surprise, since he’s one of the most prolific writers of this generation and consistently horrifying and though-provoking.

 

Memorable quote: “The soil of a man’s heart is stonier. He grows what he can and he tends to it.”  “What you bought, you owned, and what you owned eventually came home to you.”

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