Book Review – Apparition by Michaelbrent Collings


Kari Wills has tried and failed to murder her children. Now her husband, Shane, struggles to make ends meet and to raise their son and daughter on his own, but they aren’t out of danger yet. The same force that worked through Kari hasn’t given up. A force that is cruel, sadistic, and insatiable.

Michaelbrent Collings has turned out several horror novels in the past few years, including excellent pieces such as The Loon and The Haunted. His novel Apparition surpasses all of its predecessors. He starts off the book with a nail-biter of a first chapter and maintains an atmosphere of tension until the end. This one is a page-turner that kept my eyes locked on the story for hours on end. The overall concept (I don’t want to spoil anything, so I’ll be vague) is unusual. I’ve seen a similar concept once before, but it is not the same as Collings’s vision. Apparition is uncompromising and relentless.

Once again, Collings focuses on the dynamics of the family unit and the loss of loved ones. Shane, the father of the family, suffers in particular because he is driven by an urge to protect his children and hurt them at the same time. This resonates with a particularly difficult fear to examine, in which we fear doing something horrible that is beyond our control, and at the same time we question whether what we are driven to do is what we really desire or not. This is ultimately a novel about love and the how it is tested with Shane fighting the horrifying urge to hurt those he loves the most. The children, Matthew and Ella, are characterized believably and it is easy to sympathize with them. Collings usually tackles his horror through the eyes of parents, and so it is unusual to see children taking center stage through a hefty portion of the book. To top everything off, there are a few hints of the Lovecraftian touch as well that adds a little spice to the story. Just a disclaimer: this isn’t a Cthulhu mythos story. Anyway, this comes highly recommended by me. Look for this book (or the ebook) on Amazon.   5 stars.

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  1. [...] March 29, 2013 – Horror-Web reviews Apparition and gives it 5 stars. [...]

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