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“Sequel to Summer of Night--written in the FUTURE for the characters, not immediately after events in SoN. Simmons is an incredible writer, IMHO!”see full review » see other reviews »
“Sequel to Summer of Night--written in the FUTURE for the characters, not immediately after events in SoN. Simmons is an incredible writer, IMHO!”Kimberly wrote this review Friday, July 26, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This review first appeared on my blog: http://www.knittingandsundries.com/2013/06/682013-winter-haunting-by-dan-simmons.html
I purchased A Winter Haunting not realizing that it was the second in Simmons' Seasons of Horror series. I realized as I read that it was a continuation of Summer of Night (link to my review). I bought it because I like Simmons' writing style - creepy, but not too :) Honestly, you don't need to have read Summer of Night to enjoy this book - any background you need is supplied in the story.
Simmons delivers again!
Dale is a college professor in Wyoming who takes a one-year sabbatical and decides to return to his hometown of Elk Haven, Illinois to get his head together and to work on his latest novel. The home he stays in was the former home of a childhood friend who was killed at a very young age. Menacing black dogs, strange messages on his computer, a sheriff who used to be the town bully, and a pack of skinheads who menace and threaten him due to some anti-militia articles he wrote are all part and parcel of a strange unfolding of creepy terror. As you read, you'll wonder if Dale is simply going crazy (and he wonders the same thing).
Told in alternating first- and third- person POV, the novel progresses slowly, building up the anticipation and questions nicely, until ... BAM! Then there are surprises at every turn of the page. Just when you think it's over, the ending gives another surprise. There is only one unanswered question, but that question is not pivotal to the elemental story and leaves room for the next-in-series.
If you like creepy stories and good character development, this is the tale for you.
But I'm digressing even before I begin the story. I always hated writers who did that. I still have no powerful opening line. I'll just begin again.
Forty-one years after I died, my friend Dale returned to the farm where I was murdered. It was a very bad winter.
Dale had first visited the psychiatrist two days after he had set the muzzle of the loaded Savage over-and-under shotgun against his temple and pulled the trigger.
Kneeling there, hearing the punks shout and howl off to his right, knowing that he was no hero but just an injured and terrified middle-aged man unused to violence and afraid to die, Dale still wished that he could become a wolf. If he became a wolf, he would rip the throat out of the nearest skinhead before the others killed him. If he became a wolf, he would taste their warm blood even as they killed him.
Writing: 5 out of 5 stars
Plot: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Characters: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Reading Immersion: 4.5 out 5 stars
BOOK RATING: 4.6 out of 5 stars”
“A little bit loose -- both with the plot and the chills -- this book is still nevertheless an interesting read. ”Jessica Blond wrote this review Tuesday, February 19, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This one had me fooled. Story is told thru Duane (dead child killed by a Combine accident). Dale goes back to Messoulin Illinois to dead childhood friend Duane's house. It is haunted. Plastic sheets hang upstairs. Dale's laptop computer receives messages in Old English even tho he has no phone hookup for internet. Dale meets Michelle a childhood classmate and almost has an affair with her. She is stalked and killed by savage black dogs. Dale is chased by skinheads. He finds out Michelle and her sweetheart Diane were killed years ago by her jealous ex-husband. She's a ghost now! So is Duane, C.J. Conjdin (bully sherriff) and dogs. Gets a little hoaky at the end. Dale tries to commit suicide (again) but is spared.”Bonnie SS wrote this review Monday, February 27, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“A great story of a middle aged man caught up in his past, which indeed has come back to haunt him.”Zachery Savage wrote this review Wednesday, February 22, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Dan Simmons never fails to scare the crap out of me.”Monkey Logic wrote this review Thursday, January 12, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This was a pretty slow read. It picked up toward the end, but was still nowhere near as entertaining as The Summer of Night. ”Jenn HJ wrote this review Friday, January 6, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“a follow up to summer of night very good”ilene t wrote this review Friday, December 9, 2011. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“prvi deo je ipak bolji.”DnevniHejter wrote this review Friday, March 25, 2011. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Dale Stewart returns to Elm Haven with plans to take up residence in Duane's old farmhouse and spend nine months working on his new novel. Strange happenings at the old farmhouse would suggest the place is haunted. But Dale doesn't believe in ghosts.
Semi-sequel to Summer of Night (either can be read alone). Great atmosphere and a quick plot. Nice to return to Elm Haven. ”