I love me some horror. Movies, books, comics...you name it (unless it's a gore-vehicle, torture porn, satanic worship or possession, or voodoo) and i like it.
I have fond memories of watching the local Nightmare theater when I was...oh, let's say pre-school age. I remember sneaking into the basement to watch snippets of Alien that my brother and his date were watching on an early VCR. I read just about anything by King or Koontz that I could get my hands on. Same with Poe. The book fairs in elementary school supplied me with lots of "ghost story" books.
I'm still convinced that there's something in my parents' basement that will grab my hand between the time that I turn off the lights and start up the stairs. (That belief far predates Alien, by the way.) There's also a room in that house in which I will not sleep. Don't ask me why, I won't tell you.
As I mentioned above, I have my limits...again, for reasons I won't go into here. But largely, I love horror. There's only a couple movies that I can say have truly creeped me out. I've only read a few books that have truly scared me. One of those is King's The Shining. I first read it one night with a vicious winter storm raging outside my bedroom window. That lead to a couple of sleepless nights.
Yesterday morning I finished a book that hit that spot. It's being added to the list. That book is Twisted, by Michaelbrent Collings. [Aside & Disclaimer: I consider Michaelbrent to be a friend. However, I've received nothing for my review of this novel except a buttload of goosebumps and some long overnight hours. In fact, now that I think about it, I owe Michaelbrent a good-natured punch in the nose next time I see him. You see, last night I'd just finished my shower and headed downstairs to do some writing. We live in a split-level entry house, with a big picture window overlooking the entry way. As I walked downstairs I could swear--and will swear--that I saw, just for a moment, a white figure--a child--standing outside about 3 feet from the porch, staring up at me through the window. Now, you may say it was a reflection in the glass and a mixture of the stairway light and the porch light and the trees out in the front yard. But I know what I saw; my heart skipped a beat or two and I gasped out loud...and I'm pretty sure it's all Michaelbrent's fault. My wife and kids laughed, but the hair is standing up on my arms and neck just remembering it a few hours later. Not many books or movies have done that to me. End aside.]
Without giving too much away, let me start by saying the book involves the supernatural, the macabre, family relations, deep emotional issues, and complex characters. Oh, and twists. Every time you get comfortably sure you know what's going on, Michaelbrent cranks the steering wheel and yanks up on the emergency break, sending the story--and your suppositions--into a wild spin.
From the back of the book: "The Douglas family just wants to live their lives, and maybe find a bit of happiness. But when the ghost in their home breaks out of a centuries-long sleep, all hope for happiness will die. Because the thing that haunts them is not just evil... It is something much, much worse. Watching them from the shadows. Hungry to start killing once more. And thirsty for the blood of the children, the blood he has so long been denied. The thing that haunts them is not just evil. It is twisted."
I cannot recommend this book strongly enough. Grab a copy. It's available in Kindle e-format, in softcover, and from Audible.
The book is Twisted. And it certainly is.