RaveThe Nerd DailyI liked the way the house was made to feel like a character and constant presence brought to life throughout the book. The writing takes you there without overloading on the description. It really built up a picture of the house in my mind, I could feel the weather, and hear the bumps and creaks in the night. The gore was also very vivid and there were times when I felt like I was seeing what Jane was seeing. The pacing was near enough perfect. There were some lulls but I felt this was necessary to allow the reader to catch their breath. The writing was easy to follow even when talking about things such as surgery and medical things that I don’t have any real knowledge of. There were parts of the book where the writing felt hectic and rushed but I felt that may have been because that was because there were times were Jane was rushing and becoming almost delirious. If anything this added to the tension. Another strength was the characters ... Although I knew I didn’t completely \'get\' the ending, I still felt satisfyingly spooked ... I would recommend this book to fans of the gothic horror genre, but also to readers that like a bit of dark romance, to readers who like their female protagonists tough as nails, and also to anyone that’s just looking for a spooky read.
RaveThe Nerd Daily... a haunting, slow burn of a novel that explores grief, loss, denial, and a hunt for truth set against an atmospheric backdrop of the humid heat of the south. Summer Sons takes some of the characteristics you would find in a southern gothic such as flawed characters, the use of horror imagery, ghost stories, and secrets and uses them to create a layered and lingering tale. There are a fair few spooky and eerie moments, which becomes unsettling at times but that’s what can make a book go from good to great because it gets to you ... I was hooked in from reading the blurb, but I found that there is so much more to find in the story that all weaves together. It is a ghost story (maybe both physical and metaphorical), it also becomes a search for the truth, about friendship, self-discovery, unpacking trauma, re-evaluating relationships and looking towards recovery. I found it to be a very memorable, and yes, haunting read and I am already looking forward to re-reading it again with new eyes ... I’d recommend Summer Sons to fans of the southern gothic as well as those new to the genre, and I think readers who like a good mystery would enjoy this too. I’d also recommend it to those who enjoy character focused novels, as well as anyone looking to read more queer literature by queer authors.
PositiveThe Nerd DailyThe setting and surroundings within The Searcher add to the enjoyment of the novel. Ardnakelty is almost a character itself as it is always present but changing. The isolated rural town adds to the slow-growing tension and gives off a good atmosphere. At times, it was almost a cosy reading experience because of the plentiful descriptions of the weather, animals, and the food ... Although the slow start is not a negative, I would have liked to see an increase in pacing after the halfway point, because slow burners are not for everyone ... I’d have liked a fuller conclusion for an ending, but I appreciate different readers are going to want different things. It would have been more engaging to have a bit more drama, or a twist in the plot of the mystery, but on the other hand, too much drama would have been out of place with the setting of the novel. I think this is one of those stories and endings that will divide opinions!