In continuing with the second day of hosting a book tour of Whisper by Michael Bray, here is my review. I enjoyed writing this one, as it is my first horror review.
It was supposed to be a fresh start, a place for Steve & Melody Samson to start their new life together away from the noise and crime of the city. However, their new home - an idyllic cottage nestled deep within the dense solitude of Oakwell Forest has a disturbing history, hidden for generations by the local villagers, who are desperate to keep their sleepy town free from potential media attention. As Steve and Melody begin to notice the strange and bizarre things that are happening to them, they begin to unravel the complex web of lies and deceit perpetrated by the locals.
Told both in a modern day narrative and flashbacks to the building's construction in the 1800's, we learn of the terrible things that reside within Hope House, and the reasons for the history of murders, suicide and insanity for the previous owners of the house.
As Steve and Melody delve ever deeper, they are plagued not only by the malevolent forces that reside within the house but also the very real attention of the increasingly unstable realtor Donovan, who has horrific secretes of his own that he will go to any lengths to keep a secret.
Author: Michael Bray
Publisher: Michael Bray (April 19, 2013)
Format: Mobi; ePub; Paperback
Genre: Horror; Supernatural; Paranormal
Location(s) Available: Amazon; Barnes and Noble; Smashwords; Kobo
Talk about scary! Shivering in my boots! Looking at every shadow from the corner of my eye! Sleeping with the lights on! Oh boy, this book is horror, in every sense of the word. Michael Bray creates such an intriguing story from the beginning to the end. He grips you, gets into your mind and doesn't let go.
I love stories that have flashback to the past. I enjoy learning more about the why's and how's of a story when there's so much to tell. Michael does a wonderful job of going back and forth to the past and present. Michael leaves nothing out for the reader. He gives us all the detail we need in order to understand what is happening. His characters, all of them, are well developed. You get to know who they are and why they got to where they are. Let me tell you, he's got some really creepy characters in the book.
*WARNING: May contain spoilers from here on out*
When I first read the prologue, I already knew that I was in for a fright. The premise of the story was created and I wanted more. I wanted to know who this tribe was and what they had to do with story.
Michael teases us with tidbits of history surrounding two of the main characters of the story, Hope House and Oakwell Forest. Hope House and Oakwell Forest were very much who/what the story was about. When Steve and Melody first saw the house, Steve knew something was up. Melody was so oblivious to what was going on that I wanted to yell at her! When a book makes me want to interact with the character in any way, it makes for an incredible story. I wanted to protect them both because I knew it was just gonna get worse from there on out. And it did!
Not only did Steve and Melody had to deal with the supernatural beings that haunted them and their home but also with the very real, physical presence of a human being. I couldn't decide who was scarier or more sinister, the evil spirits or the evil man.
I loved how Steve and Melody went through emotional and physical transformations through out the story. We got to see sides of them that we'd never see under normal circumstances. They were pushed beyond their limits and you wondered whether they'd make it through to the end.
This story had me grabbing my sheets and wringing them. I couldn't cover my eyes, as I would when watching a scary movie because then I wouldn't be able to read but if I could, I would. I remember at one point while reading, the house was all quiet. The kids were in bed and I started hearing some noises. I'm used to that because the house "settles" but my heart started beating fast and I got scared. I even had scary dreams. My overactive mind tends to reenact in my dreams what I read or see, especially if it is really good.
I've always told my husband that while I like the idea of living in the country near isolation, that is just not for me. Whisper reinforces that notion.
Supernatural/paranormal is one of my favorite genres. I normally would read paranormal romance or urban fantasy. However, horror is fast becoming one of my favorites too. I've read loads of horror stories but only some have stood out for me in that they truly are spine tingling, bone chilling, nail biting and blood curdling horror. Whisper is such a story and will certainly be at the top of my favorite horror stories. Michael Bray is certainly a talented writer. I enjoyed this book to the point that while I was scared, I couldn't read fast enough. I wanted to know it all and take it all in.
Do I recommend this book? Hell yeah, I do!