When I first started really getting into books as a teen, I focused a lot on the horror genre. I was (and still am) a big fan of John Saul. I feel like I'm taking a step back into my past and revisiting an old friend.
The Novel: House Of Reckoning
The Author: John Saul
Synopsis (Taken from the author's web page):
For more than three decades John Saul has haunted the New York Times bestseller list-and readers' imaginations-with his chilling tales of psychological suspense and supernatural horror. His instinct for striking the deepest chords of fear in our hearts and minds is unerring, and his gift for steering a tale from the light of day into the darkest depths of nightmare is at its harrowing best in House of Reckoning.
After the untimely death of her mother while she is still in her early teens, Sarah Crane is forced to grow up quickly-in order to help tend her family's Vermont farm and look after her grieving father, who's drowning his sorrow in alcohol. But their quiet life together is shattered when her father is jailed for killing another man in a barroom brawl, and injuring Sarah in a drunken car crash.
Left in the cold care of a loveless foster family and alienated at school, Sarah finds a kindred spirit in classmate Nick Dunnigan, a former mental patient still plagued by voices and visions. And in eccentric art instructor Bettina Phillips, she finds a mentor eager to nurture her talent for painting.
But within the walls of Bettina's ancestral home, the mansion called Shutters, Sarah finds something altogether different and disturbing.
Monstrous images from the house's dark history seem to flow unbidden from her paintbrush-images echoed by Nick's chilling hallucinations. Trapped for ages in the shadowy rooms of Shutters, the violence and fury of long-dead generations has finally found a gateway from the grave into the world of the living. And Sarah and Nick have found a power they never had: to take control, and take revenge.
Well, it was as I expected..... creepy. His characters are likeable in a quirky, scary kind of way. The premise of this novel was really creepy and John Saul does a pretty good job of incorporating the small details that makes a reader feel sufficiently disturbed.
I immediately hated the antagonists, which is how it should be. The protagonists had issues, which served to make them more likeable or at least made me feel for their plight.
Compelling and chilling. This novel had all the elements that I look forward to in the horror genre.
I give "House Of Reckoning" a rating of 3.75 out of 5.
John Saul is the type of author, that if I come across one of his old novels which I haven't read before, I won't hesitate to pick up.