The Darkest Part of the Woods

The Darkest Part of the WoodsThe Darkest Part of the Woods by Ramsey Campbell
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

As other reviewers have pointed out, THE DARKEST PART OF THE WOODS moves at a snail’s pace. I’ll admit there were times, particularly in the first half, when I almost put the novel down for good. I also found it overwritten. Not every description has to include a metaphor or simile involving trees, and yet page after page, I encountered them over and over again like a thematic sledgehammer. As with the pacing issue, this led to occasions when I felt myself fighting to keep reading.

However, if you prune away (ha ha) all the elements that slow this novel down, at its center is a compelling cosmic-horror tale about a haunted forest with its own dark intelligence, and the legacy of a magician who tried and failed to turn that intelligence to his own purposes. Strange inhuman creatures abound on the periphery of the story, along with madness and terrible family secrets, only hints of which emerge in the telling.

I’m glad I didn’t give up and kept reading all the way to the end, but I’m not going to pretend it kept my attention throughout. Do I recommend it? Yes, but only for readers with patience. If you’re looking for a fast-paced thriller, you may want to look elsewhere.

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THE HUNGRY EARTH Available for Pre-order!

My new novel, The Hungry Earth, coming October 5th, is now available for pre-order!

Sakima, New York, a sleepy, idyllic city nestled in the Hudson Valley, a place where everyone knows each other, families look after the highly prized community garden, and the crime rate is so low that Dr. Laura Powell, the police department’s medical examiner, spends most of her time tending to her own private medical practice.

That changes drastically the day a local high school student is found dead, an apparent suicide. Called in to perform the autopsy, Laura uncovers a strange growth inside the body, composed of a mysterious substance she can’t identify. Enlisting the aid of her scientist ex-boyfriend, Booker Coates, Laura launches an investigation that leads to a horrifying discovery.

Something deadly has taken root in Sakima, an organism whose toxic influence spreads like a disease through the population, dangerously altering minds and dominating wills, a ruthless intelligence that demands obedience. As more and more townspeople fall under its control, forming violent mobs to seek out those who remain uninfected, Laura and Booker must find a way to stop it before they become its next victims. But how can they stop something they don’t understand?

With The Hungry Earth, Nicholas Kaufmann, co-author of the bestselling horror novel 100 Fathoms Below with Steven L. Kent, launches a chilling new series of science thrillers featuring Medical Examiner Laura Powell.

I’m very excited about this one! You can pre-order the e-book edition at AmazonBarnes & Noble, Kobo, Google Play, and Apple Books! Pre-order the paperback at Amazon, and soon at other retailers as well!

Exclusive Cover Reveal for THE HUNGRY EARTH!

This Is Horror has got the exclusive cover reveal for my novel The Hungry Earth, coming this October! (And look for pre-orders to open on Monday.) See it here!

 

 

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