Skip to content

The Darkest Lullaby By Jonathan Janz

The Darkest Lullaby‘The Darkest Lullaby’ is the latest book by Jonathan Janz.

The old house waited. For years there had been rumors that the owner, Lilith Martin, had been part of an unholy cult. People spoke of blasphemous rituals, black rites filled with blood, sex…and sacrifices. Then Lilith died and the house sat empty. Until now. Lilith s nephew, Chris, and his wife, Ellie, are moving in. Ellie isn t happy about living in such a dark, foreboding place, but she wants to get pregnant and this house has a lot more room to raise a baby than their apartment. Unfortunately, she and Chris will soon learn that Lilith has other plans.

It’s been a while since I’ve read a really good horror that really terrifies me and it’s fair to say that ‘The Darkest Lullaby’ hit the spot. It’s unsettling narrative and creepy location brought me right back to my teenage years reading the chilling ‘Goosebumps’ series when I couldn’t have the book in the same room as me when I went to bed in case the characters somehow managed to come to life. Yes, it’s really that creepy.

The book is seen from the perspective of couple Chris and Ellie who move to Chris’ old homestead hoping to start a family and recover from old debts, but it’s not that easy.

The old house is creepy and riddled with reminders of Chris’s aunt who never liked Ellie and there’s a presence that they’re not alone in the building. Meanwhile, there’s the woman and man that appears to the couple, freaking them out as well as the rumours of there once being a cult on the land.

The story is reminiscent of ‘The Shining’ and ‘The Wicker Man’, with the cult rumours and the character development as the story progresses. Cleverly written and unsettling throughout, ‘The Darkest Lullaby’ is a wonderfully old fashioned horror story with fills with wit and gore and terrifies the reader to the core.

You can buy ‘The Darkest Lullaby’ from Amazon.

The Girl With All The Gifts By M.R. Carey

The Girl WIth All The Gifts‘The Girl With All The Gifts’ was hailed as one of the great books of 2014 and after finishing it during the week, I have to agree.

Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don’t like her. She jokes that she won’t bite. But they don’t laugh. Melanie is a very special girl.

The story is a complex story that made me experience a flurry of emotions as Melanie is essentially the bad guy of the story but how can you dislike an innocent and sweet little girl?

It takes place years after a huge outbreak and the human race was wiped out leaving behind ‘Hungry’s’ zombie like creatures that crave human flesh and blood. Melanie is in a secure unit with other children and each day they are wheeled to their classes and taught about the world before the outbreak. Melanie loves class particularly her teacher Miss Justineau, who reads Greek myths and shows some affection and warmth towards her unlike others who keep her at bay. Miss Justineau gives Melanie hope, that there is life beyond the four walls.

There are five main characters in the story Melanie, Miss Justineau, Sergeant Parks, Dr Caldwell and Private Gallagher, who all find themselves on the run when one day the base is attacked. Sergeant Parks has grown to hate creatures like Melanie and finds it hard to adjust without in her usual restraints and feels threatened whilst they try to get to safety with limited protection. He’s outspoken, loud and feels pressure to protect the small group. Dr Caldwell is hated by Miss Justineau who wants to protect Melanie, as the doctor has previously killed a lot of children with her research, Melanie is afraid of the calm and quiet woman who is fascinated by her and finally there is Gallagher, a young and timid man who hates the way his life has turned out, regularly he looks back and his reflections make for heartfelt reading.

The characters are a brilliant team and make for fascinating reading as they all fight for survival, the dynamics often change within the group as new realisations come to light and Melanie finds herself becoming the unlikely protector of the team. The backdrop of the story is set against a damaged and ruined dystopian world in Britain, it’s bleak and hopeless but this small team give a tiny chink of hope as they all fight for their lives.

It’s hard to review this book, as it would be very easy to give it all away with its many twists and turns and I’ve probably said too much already! But I have to say how much I loved Melanie, an innocent girl who has a sweet curiosity about life and knows the difference between right and wrong. She struggles with her emotions and the things she sees and her primary focus is protect Miss Justineau, a woman who only sees her as a little girl and not a threat.

An originally, gory and gripping story, that had my full attention throughout, ‘The Girl With All The Gifts’ is a gloriously unexpected terrifying and poignant story that has an absolute sweetheart of a lead.

You can buy The Girl With All The Gifts from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

Harbour by John Ajvide Lindquist

Harbour book cover

Harbour is the latest novel by John Ajvide Lindquist author of ‘Let the Right One In’ one of favourite books and I was eagerly anticipating ‘Harbour’ to be just as good but unfortunately it wasn’t.

Harbour is based on the story of Anders and Ceclia, who one day took their six year old daughter Maja for a walk on the frozen island across from a lighthouse, they turned away from Maja for a split second to admire the view and when they turned back, Maja is gone.

Two years later, Ceclia has left Anders and as he struggles on with life, he returns to the island and immediately feels a presence. He begins to wonder if the presence could be Maja. As the presence grows stronger and Anders investigates, he discovers that Maja is the latest in the long line of disappearances and that within the small fishing village lurks a dark, dwelling secret,

From the beginning, this book unsettled me. Lindquist is wonderful at creating eerie, creepy situations that continued throughout the story.

Unfortunately I didn’t enjoy this book as much as I hoped, it spooked me out, mainly due to the presence of children and a sea that turns against the world. This book was much to dark and strange to enjoy but I would still reccomend reading “Let the Right One In”, a wonderful read and much more interesting than Harbour.

You can buy Harbour on Amazon and other good bookshops.