A spate of brutal murders occur in and around the small town of Thussock. The bodies of the dead – savagely mutilated, unspeakably defiled – are piling up with terrifying speed. There are no apparent motives and no obvious connections between the victims, but the killings only began when Scott Griffiths and his family arrived in Thussock...
An author who resides as one of my all-time favourites and one who has consistently delivered when it comes to post-apocalyptic horror, I was somewhat apprehensive but excited to hear that Moody was releasing a story which contained neither zombies or the end of the world as we know it.
A compelling story following the relocation of a family, moving from their home in Redditch to Thussock. Thussock is a deprived town in the middle of nowhere, a town that time seems to have forgotten. Located in a remote location, near a fracking site, where unemployment is rampant and the town’s people aren’t welcoming to outsiders, it’s hard to understand why anyone would move there and the motives aren’t revealed until the later parts of this intriguing story. The dynamics of the family seem perfectly normal to begin with but with the secrecy and somewhat controlling and violent nature (that the reader is slowly introduced to) of one of the main characters, Scott Griffiths, hints at a more sinister side to this family.
As well as the stress of moving there is also the issue of a spate of gruesome murders which only started when the family showed up, instantly the close knit community of Thussock start to have suspicions of the strangers within their midst. As the reader, you start to develop your own conclusions, could it be one of the residents of the strange town or is it the hot headed Scott, the mystery creates an enthralling page turner. Pulling me in with its superb characterisation and realistic dialogue. I couldn’t tear my eyes away from the page, yet some of the gruesomeness and the detailed description employed by Moody had me reading mouth agape. This is not a story for someone with a weak constitution. Although this story is not the platform I am used to from Moody, I was not surprised to read the gruesome, violent and graphic descriptions of the murder victims, disturbing and grotesque as would be expected from the author of the Autumn and Hater series.
As anyone who reads Moody’s stories will tell you, a real strength in his writing is his masterful way of taking what seem like ordinary people and thrusting the into shocking situations, with crisp dialogue and an ability to depict believable and realistic human interaction and reactions in these circumstances. This as well as a disturbing plot and setting Moody creates a highly believable and all the more terrifying story. Highly recommended.