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The Wicked by James Newman
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The Wicked

by James Newman

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355321,274 (4.07)3

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Showing 5 of 5
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This is an unashamed hark back to 1980's horror, noticeable from the first chapter, where a family escapes from the painful memories in the city, moving to a small town with it's own dark secret. It's hook may be stereotypical, but it's written well enough and the characters strong enough to keep you immersed from the the start, right until the last chapter.

This novel stands tall amongst it's genre for a couple of reasons. Firstly, the relationships are well conceived, the family's dialogue seems realistic, their frustrations real world ones. Both genders are well represented, avoiding some of the weaker narrative and stereotypes in pulp horror. As tension builds, this helps create more realism, the familial discourse is spot on.

There are plenty of established authors (King, Koontz, Bentley Little) who have used the small town scenario and Newman mimics none directly, yet his style includes a little of all their approaches.

The horror itself is grandiose, reminiscent of Graham Masterton, where no taboo is too far, the horror real and grisly. Newman seems to never hold back, freely using sensual and sexual elements to escalate the terror and feel of malevolence.

It's not a clever horror novel, nor does it try to be. This is a very enjoyable roller-coaster ride in a small town beset by evil. It may be typical of a genre popular a few decades back, but it's done well! ( )
  SonicQuack | Apr 25, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Firstly, I loved loved loved Newman's debut novel, Midnight Rain. It is a wonderful coming-of-age tale/crime drama. The Wicked is his attempt at 80's throwback paperback horror.

Not bad, but this isn't Newman's strength ( )
  Mordecai42 | Apr 13, 2017 |
3.5 rounded up to 4 - and justifiably so, because the bonus story "The Boaracle" was the perfect way to end it. The ads in the back were a nice touch as well.
I enjoyed this well-told tale quite a bit, and did my best to read it in the spirit intended: as a cheesy 80's horror paperback, my favorite kind. As such, it delivered the goods.
Recommended for those looking for a fun, flowing, old-school horror read. ( )
  Evans-Light | Nov 8, 2015 |
Newman is awesome! I love the trip back to the '80s. The suspense is excellent, and above all, I wasn't exactly sure how the book was going to end. I recommend this novel. ( )
  DonCranford | Dec 3, 2013 |
A fire has destroyed a children’s hospital outside of Morganville, North Carolina. Sixty people died, thirty-seven were children. Shortly after the fire David and Kate Little move into their new home in the small town. They have a little girl named Becca and Kate is pregnant. They hope to start a new life after Kate was assaulted back in their previous home of New York. The town seems quiet, but strange things start to happen. Soon they discover that the fire has awakened an ancient evil that will change the town forever.

This novel was a fun quick read. The style is very Stephen King circa 1980’s. The characters are well written and you start to care for them. My favorite character is an elderly ex-marine next door neighbor. He is tough and strong and doesn’t take anything from anyone. He turns out to be David’s best defense when his family is threatened. If you enjoy 1980’s horror novels I highly recommend this book. ( )
  craso | Nov 1, 2012 |
Showing 5 of 5
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