Sunday, April 23, 2017

REVIEW: The Halloween Children by Brian Freeman and Norman Prentiss

Who doesn't love a good Halloween story?

Although Halloween is still some months away, there's no excuse not to get yourself in the mood with a good Halloween tale.

Which is exactly what authors Brian James Freeman and Norman Prentiss have delivered with The Halloween Children - a solid, creepy, tale of horror and paranoia, in the vein of Stephen King's The Shining.

Without giving too much of the plot away, the story focuses on Harris and Lynn and their two children, who live in a community housing estate. The strained relationship between Harris, the estate's caretaker, his wife provides the mechanics for the story, with each chapter bouncing between the two, revealing small details about an apparent tragedy in the estate - and their mistrust of each other.

This is where the comparisons to The Shining can be made, but to the authors' credit, they keep the mystery at the forefront, skillfully pulling the reader along as we are left wondering which character is telling the truth.

As Halloween draws closer in the story, Freeman and Prentiss ramp up the tension and paranoia, building to a dark and open-ended, but still very satisfying climax. The mystery of the story is its greatest asset, as well as its atmosphere of dread.

Overall, this is a really good Halloween story, perfect not just for the evening of October 31, but any night of the year.

I give it 4/5 stars.

The Halloween Children is available for pre-order from Penguin/Random House via this LINK

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