Samhain Publishing is on a roll! I am continuously impressed with them because I have yet to read one of their titles that I have not liked. I also have to commend the author of today’s book, David Searls; I reviewed one of his previous books last year, BLOODTHIRST IN BABYLON, but I feel that he actually topped himself with YELLOW MOON. This book has a hearty dose of terror and a cringe-factor that is off the charts!
If you are not familiar with YELLOW MOON, here is the plot synopsis courtesy of Samhain Publishing:
One day, thirty strangers arrived in the small town of Cleary, Ohio. And five boys vanished during a baseball game in the park. Bizarre tunnels have appeared under the town, leading to a place no earthly eye has seen before. Eventually the children will return, but the once-peaceful town of Clearly may wish they’d stayed away. For they will not be alone. They will bring with them unimaginable creatures, monsters only visible in the eerie light of…the yellow moon.
Author David Searls certainly knows what horror fans want in their fiction. One minute he’s startling you with something unexpected, and the next he’s making you cringe with something gruesome. These two attributes are necessities in any horror medium, and Searls delivers heartily on both!
As with his previous book, YELLOW MOON is written very well and flows seamlessly at a nice clip. I’m surprised at how short this book is, chiming in at just over 200 pages, but it certainly packs a punch in just a few pages. There’s more content here than some 500-page novels I’ve read.
The characters are believable and the small-town setting is a perfect place for the plot to unfold. And speaking of the plot, wow…Searls takes something simple and turns it into a full-blown nightmarish scenario. This is a definite tell-tale sign that you’re dealing with a talented writer, when they can change the ordinary into the hellish.
There’s plenty of suspense in YELLOW MOON as well, although I think the horror outweighs the suspense by a vast margin. This is definitely a good thing for me! There’s also some nice carnage and gore as well. I would love to see some of these scenes played out in movie form, just to see what the special effects team could come up with.
YELLOW MOON is a major win for me and I highly recommend giving this book a look. It was originally released in 1994, which is why you’ll find references to using a payphone (a what?) and other old school nuances, but don’t let this dissuade you; this book is just as terrifying now as I’m sure it was back then. You have to wait a couple of weeks to get it, but definitely mark your calendars now.