Posted by Justine Solomons on April 29, 2012, in Recommendations
Review written by Caroline Goldmsith
You can buy this in Kindle format here now: Seed
Note it won't be published in paperback until July 201Seed by Ania Ahlborn
One of the fresh faces from Amazon’s new 47North imprint for sci-fi, horror and fantasy titles is Polish born Ania Ahlborn. Now resident in the USA, Ahlborn’s writing has been compared to early Stephen King. Her first novel “Seed” introduces us to Jack Winter, husband and father of two girls. After a terrifying car accident, Jack’s six year old daughter Charlie begins to change, seemingly possessed by a dark force that Jack tried to outrun as a child so many years ago.
Set in the deep South of the States there are some standout scenes of domestic horror here, in the vein of Peter Blatty’s “The Exorcist” and, of course, the ultimate creepy kid, Damien Thorne. But although it is well-written the horror is nothing new and I even found myself questioning, towards the slower middle of the book, whether Charlie’s behaviour was just a standard temper tantrum rather than the result of some supernatural force.
Comparisons with early King are a little rash to my mind. Ahlborn is a competent, if unpracticed, writer but her storyline is flimsy, perhaps better suited to a short story or a novella rather than a novel. Her characters are never really explored and the richness and detail that King brings to his work just isn’t here. Even Ahlborn’s “evil demon” is never really developed to its potential and whilst I don’t mind the tease of unanswered questions, I found that, actually, here I didn’t care very much to know.
In its defence, the book is a quick and entertaining read with a good, albeit rushed, ending. Ahlborn can clearly write horror and I would read her again but for a first offering this was a little disappointing.