Book Review: Bird Box

Bird Box by Josh Malerman

Something is out there, something terrifying that must not be seen. One glimpse of it, and a person is driven to deadly violence. No one knows what it is or where it came from.

Five years after it began, a handful of scattered survivors remains, including Malorie and her two young children. Living in an abandoned house near the river, she has dreamed of fleeing to a place where they might be safe. Now that the boy and girl are four, it’s time to go, but the journey ahead will be terrifying: twenty miles downriver in a rowboat—blindfolded—with nothing to rely on but her wits and the children’s trained ears. One wrong choice and they will die. Something is following them all the while, but is it man, animal, or monster?

Interweaving past and present, Bird Box is a snapshot of a world unraveled that will have you racing to the final page.

I tore through this book in 2 sittings as I could hardly put it down. I loved how creepy it was in a non-gory way. The psychological aspect was compelling and built the tension perfectly.
Malorie is a great character and I love how we come to feel for her and feel the absolute pain of the decisions that she feels forced to make in this horrific situation. She had to act in ways that were terrible and against everything that most people would expect they would ever have to do, but she was doing the best that she could with what she had, including emotional reserves. It is always hard to have children as characters in a horror novel, but I think that the author did a great job here, using them to show how completely dire the situation was rather than victimizing them.
The book, in some ways, is slow in that there is not that much actual action, but it is the tension that is wonderful and had me racing to turn the pages. I love a book with a thoughtful, strong, fallible heroine and this one did not disappoint.
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Author Interview: Loren Rhoads

Today I am happy to introduce urban fantasy author Loren Rhoads to my blog.

Loren Rhoads photo copyHello Loren, tell us about your book.

Lost Angels is about a succubus named Lorelei who decides to bring down an angel. Azaziel turns around and possesses her with a mortal girl’s soul. Lorelei and the ghost become friends as they contend with demons, harpies, fiends, and Lorelei’s grudge-holding sister as they try to find an exorcist who can separate the two of them again. The book sashays across the line between dark urban fantasy and erotic horror with some romance thrown in.

Tell us about your writing process. How do you fuel your writing?

This book was different than the others I’ve written because it was a collaboration. I’d worked with other people before on short stories, but a book is a completely different animal. The funny part is that Lost Angels was meant to only be a short story. I wrote The Angel’s Lair a scene at a time, sending one each day to Brian. It was scary to show someone my rough drafts like that, but because I knew he was waiting for it, it was the fastest I’d ever written a story. Little did I know that Brian was biding his time, ready to jump in and extend the story! As soon as I wrote “The End,” Brian picked up the thread. He wrote the scenes where Ashleigh, the mortal girl, dies and then continued on into the possession ritual. I was blown away. I’d never conceived of a mortal possessing a devil before. Read more

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Author Interview: Sandra Scholes

Today I am excited to introduce author Sandra Scholes to my blog.

sandraWhat genre(s) do you write in? Tell us about your books.

I have in the past written short stories for horror and fantasy newsletters, but have since got into the romance genre as I have enjoyed it the most (LGBT being one I really like). My vampire stories have been in The Chronicles, a newsletter for the London Vampyre Group, fantasy and fairy tail stories for Quail Bell Magazine and my reviews are for all genres including slipstream.

Tell us about your writing process. How do you fuel your writing?  

I tend to get an idea in my head of what I want to write about, flesh it out and build on it using a kind of chart of personality traits and put some humour in there as readers like to know their characters have a sense of humour. When my review material doesn’t get too much, I do like to write about relationships and how they work out, or don’t in many ways. I tend to base most of what I write on real life relationships as the realism helps readers get to know the characters as they could be any one of us.     Read more

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Author Interview: Steve Kemp

Today I am happy to welcome author Steve Kemp to my blog, where he is commenting on many different topics related to his writing.

steve kempAdvice for writers

I’m fascinated by the spectrum of published writers. James Mitchner said if 1 person reads your book then you are a published writer. Stephen King wrote a book about writing which I struggled to grasp a majority of the concepts in. I fall somewhere in the middle myself.

If my entire writing career means just the people I know have read my book it will have been a successful process. Write the story you want and let the chips fall where they may. I received some advice once about pov and decided to follow them strictly. The next book I read was a best seller and broke all of those rules.

I’m not an English major and to tell the truth my eyes gloss over when one starts talking. They strive to write to the levels of Chaucer, Dickens, Shakespeare and Hemingway. I could go to school for a decade and never reach their level, nor do I want to. Regular people read books too and someone has to tell those stories. Read more

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