Series: Afraid #1
Published by Headline on June 10th 2010
Genres: Fiction, Horror
Source: Kindle Unlimited
Reading Challenges: 2016 Horror Reading Challenge
Buy on: Amazon, Barnes & Noble
Reminiscent of the best novels of Stephen King and Dean Koontz, AFRAID is the first novel from Headline's newest thriller author.
Welcome to Safe Haven. Population 907.
Nestled in the woods of Wisconsin, Safe Haven is miles from everything. With one road in and out, this is a town so peaceful it has never needed a full-time police force. Until now...A helicopter has crashed on the outskirts of town and something terrible has been unleashed. A classified secret weapon programmed to kill anything that stands in its way. Now it’s headed for the nearest lights to do what it does best. Isolate. Terrorize. Annihilate.
Soon all phone lines are dead and the road is blocked. Safe Haven’s only chance for survival rests on the shoulders of an aging county sheriff. And as the body count rises, the sheriff realizes something even more terrifying - maybe death hasn’t come to his little town by accident...Welcome to Safe Haven. Population 907... 906... 905...
“There is no decent place to stand in a massacre. —LEONARD COHEN”
I came across Jack Kilborn’s Afraid while browsing through Kindle Unlimited’s mystery section. It was recommended to me because I like Blake Crouch’s work, and the two authors often work together. Yet, I let it linger on my TBR for months. I’m glad I finally picked it up and gave it a go. Not only did I get to read a very thrilling and suspenseful story, but I also discovered a new author. Author Jack Kilborn is author J.A. Konrath’s pen name for when he writes horror, and Afraid is part of the Konrath/Kilborn Collective. A collection of eight standalone novels of mystery, suspense, and horror in which the characters often crossover.
In Afraid, the people of Safe Haven, Wisconsin are fighting for their lives. Located miles from everything, there’s only one road in and out-of-town, and when a helicopter crashes in the woods, something begins picking them off one by one. Their only hope is an aging town sheriff, a waitress, and a firefighter, who come to realize that the crash wasn’t an accident. Their town was picked for a reason, and none of them are meant to get out alive.
Like many novels these days, this book is told from various POVs, and Kilborn leaves readers guessing from one page to the next. His writing style is very cinematic, and I can easily seeing his work adapted to film. The pacing is steady, making the novel hard to put down from beginning to end. Plus with loads of little cliffhangers at the end of each chapter, readers won’t want to stop reading until they finish. What I enjoyed the most was how Kilborn teased out the plot, making me wonder what was going on. I was so engrossed in this novel that I not only devoured it, but began to devour all of is other work in this collection. If you love mystery, suspense, and horror, then you’ll definitely want to check out Jack Kilborn’s books.