by D.W. Hitz
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Pub Date 17 Jan 2023 | Archive Date 17 Jan 2023
After nightmares begin in the small town of Custer Falls, Montana, in 1992, it’ll be thirty years before they end.
Just outside of Custer Falls, something is sleeping. Life in the small town was never ideal, but it was safe, quiet, and predictable. After Wes Henson and his friends’ field trip to Bloodtooth Caverns, all of that changes.
All they did was stray off the path. They didn’t expect to break their bones and discover an ancient relic. But once it’s in Wes’s hands, he’s the one that has to put it back.
Until he does, the town’s nightmares are no longer harmless. The good side of your conscience may go quiet as the devil on your shoulder speaks up. Children fall into comas, while adults are torn to pieces in their sleep.
If Wes and his friends want to survive, they’ll have to conquer the waking world and the dreamscape.
Because when this evil is awake, no one’s dreams are safe.
This story has been described as small-town epic horror, Needful Things crossed with A Nightmare on Elm Street.
Graphic violence & language
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 9 members
Bloodtooth is an amazing sweeping novel that deftly mixes genres and has you on the edge of your seat.
From the opening chapter where a group of children get seperated in a dark foreboding cavern to the ramifications thirty years later, this book throws images and blood soaked pages at you almost unrelentingly. This makes for a fast paced read with a sense of dread at what could happen next.
I loved the use of two timelines as a narrative because it gives us the chance to see and experience how events that ravaged a community in the past are linked directly to the brutality happening in the present.
The characters are well thought out and each one, even minor ones, felt real and unique.
I appreciated the many scenes of bloody mayhem as that helps solidify the peril our protagonists are in as they attempt to stop this evil that seems to have invaded the town once again.
I highly recommend this book!
This was such a refreshing surprise. Hitz has absolute control of his story, and what a story it is! The sheer complexity of the narrative, the masterful intertwining of the two plotlines (in 1992 and 2022), plus the carefully delineated characters - this is certainly not a book to be taken lightly (pun intended - it's huge!) A small town horror, part coming of age story part cosmic horror, with very strong 'It' vibes, a deep knowledge of comics, unpredictable plot twists, graphic gory scenes - what more can a horror fan want? Without a doubt, this book is destined to become a classic. In short, I highly recommend it. It was an absolute joy to receive a free ARC from NetGalley!
I will give this book three stars. The author invites us into a small Montana town whose residents are being plagued by a dream demon: one who feeds on fear and hate and who can both seduce the vulnerable to acts of unspeakable violence and also turn one's dreams into a living nightmare. In other words, what happens in your dreams happens to you in real life. The premise is solid and the action unrelenting. There is a fair amount of gore but not over the top. The author alternates from events past to events present in the lives of his characters to give the reader a sense of how this evil has radically impacted them over time as they fight to preserve both their lives and their sanity, My only criticism is that while switching from past to present can be an effective plot technique, the author does it so often and with so many characters that it is easy to lose track of what is happening to whom and in what time frame. I found myself having to go back and review details of the story so as not to be become confused. That notwithstanding, I would recommend this book to anyone who likes a good tale of terror with a bit of fantasy to boot.
I have ADHD and I normally do not read such long works of fiction so please take the first part my review with a grain of salt if you do not share my neurotype.
I struggled with keeping track of the timeline due to the going back and forth in time and the multiple POV characters (though it was identified clearly when the story switched back and forth).
That being said, I was impressed with how Hitz managed to make such a sprawling story feel oppressive and heavy as well as urgent.
The storytelling reminded me of Masterton's but without the quirks that aged poorly (in other words Masterton but better). I think it's also important to point out that this book is almost all story, there's not a lot of time spent on description and setting up spaces and characters, it shows you who the characters are through was they do. Di is the one character which is sort of an exception to this and that brings me to my other point, Hitz managed to give each character a unique tone and voice in a way that was surprisingly minimalist.
If you're looking for a serious horror story that doesn't pull punches and will keep you at the edge of your seat until it just gets absolutely crushing, look no further.
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