Review: Demon Shadows by Mike Sirota


November 18, Tuesday - The snow was deep; we couldn't make it through the pass. Only the Lord knows if we will be able to cross these Sierra mountains. 

January 2, Friday - Ada Krueger died. Ate our children's dog, as there is nothing else. George Stillwell said we should think about eating the flesh of our dead. God in heaven help us if this is our only hope! 

January 4, Sunday - Jordy Fry said he saw a figure through the trees in the direction of the pass. Maybe our Salvation is near . . .

 Bestselling author Paul Fleming has writer's block. The past few months have been hell. Four weeks at the prestigious Thorburn Colony, a writers' and artists' retreat in the high Sierras, seems to be the perfect cure. Until an ancient horror returns to collect on an old debt-and make Paul realize that he had no idea what hell really is.                                        


 My Rating: 2.5 stars out of 5

I finished this book a few days ago, and I'm still not entirely sure how I feel about it. On one hand I really liked the mixture of Indian "Legends" that was incorporated into this novel; as well as the "diaries" of John Thorburn that were recorded at the same time. Heck, I even enjoyed the "current"  plight of the main character Paul Fleming as he battles "writers block" to the point that he agrees to being sent to the remote wilderness to work in "spartan conditions" in order to get the creative juices flowing, and a new novel churned out. 

However... there was too much of this novel that just did not add up. For the sake of my readers, I'm going to try and break this down in a +/- sort of way.

+ The underlying "evil" that occurs throughout this story is original, and not something that I have seen before. 

+/- With the exception of a few "dead" parts, the story moves fast enough that you keep reading to find out if your assumptions are correct (or maybe you're like me and can't put aside a story once you've started it, no matter what your feelings are).

- The characters are (for the most part) entirely way too one dimensional. With few exceptions, there is little to no back-story to explain why they act the way they do. Even those characters whose stories are eventually explained... it feels less like an explanation of their behavior as a character and more like the author saying "this is how I want to end it and this is why I will end it this way". For some of the characters, I felt this was too out of context and took away from the overall plot instead of being a "surprise" event. 

Don't get me wrong, there were portions of this book that I liked, and portions that I didn't.. this book will appeal to some people, but not many I'm afraid. It is one of those novels that truly is "hit or miss"

Demon Shadows is available from

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