Anita's Haven

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SCORN KILLS by S. Albracht – my review no.2

on 19/01/2015

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Suzi Albracht’s Scorn Kills turned out to be quite different from what I had expected. I was forewarned it was a horror, and I had to take a deep breath and tell myself to embrace the challenge, as horrors (apart from my favourite bestselling author) are not really my cup of tea at all. The title itself seemed promising, as the word ‘scorn’ reminded me of ‘corn’ and The Children of the Corn, and I do love puns.
However, reading the first chapter made me realize there would be no corn at all, but tons of gripping storytelling. I have to say if the first chapter is meant to grab your attention, this one definitely does. Telling the story in the first person is not always a good choice, but I would definitely commend the author on making that bold decision here, because it emphasizes the impact of the first chapter where (spoiler alert ahead) the main character finds himself confined in a…. box (opting not to divulge too much here), facing his own decisions. The first-person storytelling flows naturally throughout the book, giving it a really believable tone. There are places which even made me chuckle (e.g. checking his teeth when the vixen lady phones him). The first person technique also helps you connect with the character, which might otherwise be difficult, seeing as the hero is a really plausible anti-hero, an average, seemingly successful man, with all the insecurities of his middle-aged aspirations, taking his family for granted and finding excuses for every single stupid, naive, greedy decision he makes.  In fact, apart from the occasional glimpses of positivity, mostly in the role of Mikael (the anti-hero’s best friend), there is hardly any character there you would be proud to know in real life. And yet, and congrats to the author on this amazing skill, Suzi Albracht manages to entice you to read the story through, whether it is because you want to see the anti-hero redeem himself, or you can’t wait to see him punished for all he does.
The initial chapter offers horror, which later on melts into ordinary horrible events of marital and family life, betrayal, death, separation, etc., and the supernatural horror-like events give way to the ugliness of human indifference, nastiness and misery, with only hints of awful things to follow masterfully added by the author, almost in passing, from time to time. She weaves her web of details and waves of treacherous serenity up until the true horror of the final chapters, when all hell breaks loose and, without mercy, as promised and announced, the author punishes all the guilty. Well, almost all;)…

Anita Kovacevic

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One response to “SCORN KILLS by S. Albracht – my review no.2

  1. […] Sometimes you need a good fright to get the juices of life going… My review is here. […]

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