A group of motorists become stranded on a lonely stretch of highway during a Christmas Eve blizzard and fight for survival against an unnatural force in the storm. The gathered survivors realise a tenuous connection among them means it may not be a coincidence that they all ended up on this highway. An attempt to seek help leads a few of the travellers to a house in the woods where a twisted toy maker with a mystical snow globe is hell bent on playing deadly games with a group of people just trying to get home for the holidays.
If you are a fan of horror then this book is for you, I hadn’t actually realised it was horror when I picked it as it’s not a genre I normally read a great deal of. I thought is was more of a crime fiction. However, this is really a horror and thriller.
A group of people on their way home for the Christmas holidays get stranded in the snow in New Hampshire. The blizzard is so bad that a snowplough gets stuck but where did the driver go? Nothing can get past it the cars are stuck. With an eight car pile up, and no way of getting any help until the highway can be opened the following morning the 11 strangers have no choice but to stick it out. At first it seems random them all being there, but is it?
It’s quite a mix up of characters, varying in ages, All the drivers and passengers end up in an RV driven by a very odd old couple, but there is plenty of food and propane to make the night endurable, everyone is just trying to keep warm and sheltered from the blizzard raging outside. You are left trying to guess what the connection between these people could possibly be, as you learn more about each one, through their worst winter experiences -strange, sad and at times sadistic stories, the characters realise that they all share something or someone in common. At times it is very creepy the author certainly knowing how to turn the dial up a notch. The weather even makes it feel tense. At times you feel you are sitting among the characters as they each tell their stories. Feeling the chills run up and down your spine.
The writer has managed to put a very atmospheric feeling into the plot, and you would think how can you have a story with people just sat stranded. But it works, you get to see a bit of each character past and present. The first half of the book was great as the story was building, getting to know characters, the storm outside, the tension building, great, edge of your seat. The build up so well crafted but then! Christmas arrives, along with Krampus and killer snowmen with sharp teeth. Will this be a Christmas not to be forgotten? Will they survive?
I give this book ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ out of ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ if you like a horror story you will certainly enjoy this one.
I would like to thank #netgalley and #Flametreepress for an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest,fair and unbiased review.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Gregory Bastianelli is the author of the novels Loonies and Jokers Club. His stories have appeared in the magazines Black Ink Horror, Sinister Tales and Beyond Centauri.
He graduated from the University of New Hampshire where he studied writing under instructors Mark Smith, Thomas Williams and Theodore Weesner. He worked for nearly two decades at a small daily newspaper where the highlights of his career were interviewing shock rocker Alice Cooper and B-movie icon Bruce Campbell.
He lives in Dover, NH, in a Colonial home built in the 1700s.
He is a member of the Horror Writers Association and the New England Horror Writers.