Snowblind, by Christopher Golden, is disturbing in a way that all horror stories must aspire to be. The tension throughout is palpable. Within a few chapters the reader is drawn into a world with an undercurrent of fear. Deaths go unexplained because the given explanation is impossible to accept, a threat that is dismissed as implausible.
The story is set in Coventry, Massachusetts, a place where winters are harsh and snow storms expected. A particularly brutal storm claims the lives of eighteen people overnight, many in unusual circumstances. The brother of one of the young victims witnesses what has caused the deaths but his account is regarded as the nightmare imaginings of a child.
Twelve years later, with another big storm pending, some of the residents of the town are behaving strangely. They seek out those most closely affected by that terrible night long ago, recounting details that they should not have known. The bereaved may have moved on with their lives but they still bear the scars of their loss. Is it memory alone that is now haunting them?
As the plot accelerates towards its climax the reader is pulled into the vortex of the storm, its cold tendrils wrapping themselves around and making every creak in the house a concern. The writing is gripping, the denouement unexpected and chilling.
This is not a book for the faint hearted. Just like the residents of the town, the rational may dismiss it as impossible, but the next time something moves out of the corner of the eye or knocks against a darkened window, some readers may wonder what is out there…
My copy of this book was provided gratis by the publisher, Headline.