Thanks to NetGalley and Lyrical Underground for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.
Release Date: September 27th, 2016
Synopsis: It begins with a freak snowstorm in May. Hit hardest is the rural town of Colby, Connecticut. Schools and businesses are closed, powerlines are down, and police detective Jack Glazier has found a body in the snow. It appears to be the victim of a bizarre ritual murder. It won’t be the last. As the snow piles up, so do the sacrifices. Cut off from the rest of the world, Glazier teams up with an occult crime specialist to uncover a secret society hiding in their midst.
The gods they worship are unthinkable. The powers they summon are unstoppable. And the things they will do to the good people of Colby are utterly, horribly unspeakable…
I’m always looking for a good horror story to give me the shivers, but never more so than during this time of year. I especially like it when an author pulls something a little different out of their hat, which is exactly what Mary SanGiovanni has done with Chills. Part police procedural, but more Lovecraftian horror story, this story hooked me from the first page and I wound up finishing it in one sitting. The premise alone is fantastic! Imagine being in a small town that’s hit with a late spring snowstorm which cuts you off from the rest of the world. Feeling claustrophobic yet? Then add to this already creepy setting, a crazed cult that’s decided it’s a great idea to open an inter-dimensional doorway and let ancient malevolent gods and their monstrous beasties in to bring about the apocalypse. When oh when will these people ever learn? *shakes head sadly* Beginning with the perplexed Colby police detectives examining the oddly mutilated remains of a murder victim, the author wastes no time in segueing into the more supernatural aspects. Her characters, for the most part, are very well developed, although I wish she had done a little more with the main character of Jack, but there’s another one that she spends a lot of time on, Kathy Ryan, who has one of the most interesting backstories I’ve read in a while, so I’m not going to fault her too much. The monsters are plentiful and come in a few grotesquely different forms, but they’re all more than capable of stalking poor unsuspecting townsfolk and committing gory mayhem. I did think the ending was a little abrupt, but it still sets things up nicely for a sequel. Overall, Chills is bloody good fun and I highly recommend it to all you horror fans out there who are looking for a quick scary read for the Halloween season.