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Book review – Kind Nepenthe by Matthew V. Brockmeyer

I had to share this week’s book find with you – from a very exciting new author comes a beautifully crafted tale of haunting horror set in the backwoods of California.



Indie horror being about people’s early efforts is generally a little experimental, as it should be, and sometimes you have to forgive a certain roughness around the edges as creators are still honing their craft. That’s a process that never really ends – I know my own art is still evolving and even after decades of doing it, I can still see improvements year on year. So I can say with some authority that to see a first novel this good right out of the gate is impressive.

The sense of dread builds nicely as we watch the main character Rebecca and her little family become ever more ensnared – and that’s exactly how it feels reading it, that the reader knows the characters have stepped in a trap but they won’t feel it until they start to struggle.  The book is described as ‘A Savage Tale of Terror’ but I think it’s better than that. Don’t get me wrong, am bang alongside a spot of savagery and terror occasionally myself, but the book delivers a lot more – it’s a strong story but part of that strength comes from the complex relationships within it – between the people and the land, the past and the present. 

I also checked out the publishing house – from their own mission statement, ‘Black Rose Writing is an independent publishing house that strongly believes in developing a personal relationship with their authors. The Texas-based publishing company doesn’t see authors as clients or just another number on a page, but rather as individual people… people who deserve an honest review of their material and to be paid traditional royalties without ever paying any fees to be published.’ Good. Very, very good.

You can buy Kind Nepenthe on Amazon, visit Matthew V. Brockmeyer‘s site and check out Black Rose Writing.

Karen is a full time artist living in Whitby (perfect location for a horror fan). Her own monsters have taken over to the point where they actually have their own closet space and so she takes refuge in books and films, some of which she’d like to share with you.