Today’s book review is brought to you by novelist and poet Nikki Dudley.
Someone’s in the House by Samuel Bonner
Synopsis: Not all haunting is supernatural… Rita is a teenage mother who has managed to survive everything life has thrown at her. After finally escaping her abusive, drug-addicted boyfriend, Rita thought she’d found reprieve in her new home, away from the beatings and the constant humiliation. But her nightmare was just about to begin. It started with simple intimidations; a bump in the night, strange scrawling on the front door, sinister ornaments left in the garden. At first, she thinks it’s the neighbourhood kids playing tricks on her, but it soon becomes apparent that something is eerily amiss in the area. Raving lunatics scream into the night while fiendish strangers skulk on every street corner, festering within the shadows. Now, something terrible is happening in the house on Elmridge Road. Suddenly, Rita has the horrible feeling that the noises she hears at night may not just be her imagination, that they might actually be footsteps creeping up the stairs. And then there is the shuffling in the attic …Someone’s in the House is a visceral, disturbing and genuinely horrific tale of witchcraft in a depraved corner of London.
‘Someone’s in the House’ is available from http://www.amazon.com/Someones-House-Samuel-Bonner/dp/1780032919 and http://www.amazon.co.uk/Someones-House-Samuel-Bonner/dp/1780032919.
Someone’s in the House is my first adventure into horror fiction since I was a teenager and read things like Point Horror. The good news is, I really ‘enjoyed’ my first journey back into it. As much as you can enjoy being unnerved and a little frightened of turning off the light at bedtime…
This book follows the story of Rita, a young woman trying to escape her drug-addicted boyfriend and keep her child safe in the meantime. A chance encounter with an old friend, Vicram means a change of fortune for Rita. Or so she believes… What at first seems like a great opportunity to move on and start a new life soon becomes a living nightmare, which hurtles us towards a devastating and chilling end.
I have to say, I didn’t love Rita at first. Yet after a few chapters, I started enjoying her voice a lot more. I particularly liked her son, Luke, and the moments between them. It felt quite authentic. I enjoyed too, Rita’s relationship with Vicram. This is why I particularly liked this book – I cared about the characters as well. It didn’t feel like they were just there to be tortured and destroyed, although perhaps in a horror book, you can’t expect things to end well.
The tension in the novel was built up well. Starting with noises and small sightings, this book soon became more frightening. I liked the small incidents which slowly added to a catalogue of terrifying events, keeping both the characters and readers on tenterhooks. I wasn’t quite sure where the story was headed, whether the incidents were supernatural, imagined or real. What came in the end was a shocking confrontation that didn’t pull any punches.
Those of a nervous disposition may find this novel, particularly the ending, too much to bear. To give you a hint, there is a lot of graphic violence, including some sexual violence. I won’t ruin it for those of you who bay for blood though… Personally, although the violence was a little shocking initially, I found myself unable to stop reading. Once I got to a certain point, all of my other priorities got pushed back. I had to know how it ended and if you find yourself salivating over a bit of horror, you might just feel the same.
If you like suspense and a well-crafted novel which leaves you feeling a little chilled to the bone, this is the novel for you. Although if you hide behind your hands throughout gory horror movies, you might find it a little more difficult to swallow.
Nikki is a London-based writer of novels and poetry. She is the author of two psychological thrillers, Ellipsis and Semblance.
Additionally, she has a poetry chapbook published by The Knives, Forks and Spoons Press. She co-edits experimental writing magazine, streetcake. You can find out more about her new YA novel at: http://projecttsunami.wordpress.com.
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