Outside: D.I. Russell
Reviewed By Steve Stred
First off, stick tap to fellow Kendall Reviews member Ben for putting me and Mr. Russell in touch. D.I. and myself have followed each other on Twitter for some time, but recently he was looking for some reviewers and Ben suggested me, so cheers, Ben.
‘Outside’ is a very gripping psychological thriller. We follow young Samara, aspiring artist who lives in a household of pop culture folks. D.I. does a good job of showing us just how out of touch her parents and family are at an outing to the mall. Samara just wants a few bucks for books, which she’s made fun of and chastised by her mom would have no problem buying her a very expensive jacket.
It’s this disconnect that really fuels the rest of the story.
What I liked: I enjoyed the claustrophobic state that Russell created and the mental break down that he inflicted on Samara as her art show grew closer and closer. Her family environment really heightened just how much of an outsider Samara believed she was and even her connections with her teachers – often times the one relationship that the artist puts there full trust in – was unstable.
What I didn’t like: At times I found a few moments harder to follow. It’s tough to say more staying spoiler-free, but for a shorter release, I wished some of it was a bit more fleshed out. As well, I wasn’t a big fan of Samara’s friends.
Why you should buy it: It’s in the title. If you are looking for a quick, psychological thriller, look no further. Russell created a great world here and he sucks the reader in quickly.
This one should appeal to a lot of the introverts out there who will find connection with the character.
Don’t let her in.
Mixing with others never came as naturally as mixing paint to artist Samara. Troubles with classmates and family leave her alone, trapped in her struggling mind. Only the girl with dark hair understands. A spectre, watching from afar but creeping closer with every brushstroke, determined to keep Samara all to herself. As the boundary between life and art blurs, Samara knows she must finish her painting before it consumes her.
But will the finished piece keep the girl outside at bay? Or destroy everything Samara desires?
Come to the art show with Outside, the first of the Mind Terrors series by Shadows Award finalist D. I. Russell.
A thriller of obsession, confession, and the agony of art.
Steve Stred writes dark, bleak horror fiction.
Steve is the author of three novels, a number of novellas and four collections.
He is proud to work with the Ladies of Horror Fiction to facilitate the Annual LOHF Writers Grant.
Steve is also a voracious reader, reviewing everything he reads and submitting the majority of his reviews to be featured on Kendall Reviews.
Steve Stred is based in Edmonton, AB, Canada and lives with his wife, his son and their dog OJ.
You can follow Steve on Twitter @stevestred
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