Train Thoughts – Jay Sigler
Reviewed By Steve Stred
This book came highly, highly recommend to me by Justin M. Woodward, author of Tamer Animals. He was adamant I should read it, that I’d love it and that Sigler’s debut release would be something I’d enjoy. So off of his recommendation, I bought it. And then like so many other books I snagged last year, it became buried in my TBR.
When 2019 rolled around, I realized I needed a change. I had too many good books not getting my attention because they weren’t on my main page of my kindle. So I made a point of creating a spreadsheet and putting my TBR into an order, making sure to balance it out with older purchases and recent purchases. And I made sure to put Train Thoughts near the top.
Now I can say, I regret the fact that I didn’t drop everything and read this immediately when I purchased it. Sigler has teased a few new releases are coming soon, and I can assure you that when they come out, I won’t be making this mistake again. Sigler is a massively talented writer and I wouldn’t be surprised if we even see a screen play in the future from him. He has a large cinematic scope to his prose and painted a vivid picture throughout.
Train Thoughts is a harrowing tale of grief, depression and a man grasping at the frayed straws of his sanity.
We open up, learning that the main character’s wife has died. A brutal murder occurred which he discovered. Now his day has descended into two parts – the work day and the home night. The home night is filled with visions and nightmares, what if’s and what could have been’s. So to combat the horror growing within his mind, the main character focuses on his work day – more specifically his commute to and from work. He realizes that the same group of people ride the train each day and sit in the same places and through eaves dropping, the main character creates scenarios around them. This is people watching to a sociopathic extreme.
It’s also utterly fascinating and downright gripping.
As the plot speeds up and hurdles down the track, the third act of the book plays out with demented fervor and when the dust settles and the narrative has been wrapped up, you’ll be pleased as punch at how effectively Sigler held his cards close to his body. I didn’t see the ending coming, and when I thought back to the clues that Jay had peppered the story with, I still couldn’t believe at how effective he was at keeping the ending concealed.
This is a must read for folks looking for a psychological thriller. Full of minor characters that the author gives meaningful depth to, as well as a main character that’ll take you through the gamut of emotions.
Star Rating (out of 5): 5*
“A gripping tale of pain, heartache and horror…where will your thoughts take you?”
The brutal murder of his wife plunged his life into isolation. His only connection to humanity is observing the same people day after day on the train to work. He’s even started to feel like most of them are his friends, the exception being the ominous man dressed all in black. One by one his friends begin to disappear from the train and he has reason to believe the man in black is viciously slaughtering them. If he can understand how the sadistic killer’s mind works, he will be able to anticipate his next move and prevent any future bloodshed. Descending into the twisted thoughts of madness plagues him with visions of unspeakable horror and pushes him to the brink of insanity. But the body count continues to rise. How far will one man go before shattering his own reality?
Steve Stred is an up-an-coming Dark Horror author. Steve is the author of the novel Invisible, the novellas Wagon Buddy, Yuri and Jane: the 816 Chronicles and two collections of short stories; Frostbitten: 12 Hymns of Misery and Left Hand Path: 13 More Tales of Black Magick.
Steve also has a number of works on the go and enjoys all this horror, occult, supernatural and paranormal.
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
You can visit Steve’s Official Website here
The Girl Who Hid In The Trees
Something lurks just beyond.
Centuries ago a heinous act created a ripple that still haunts the residents to this very day.
Now the kids who reside near McConnell’s Forest live forever in fear.
Jason lost his brother when he was young. He left with his friends to ‘debunk’ the urban legend and never came back.
Now Jason and his group of friends are fed up and want to discover what is happening, what is the real cause of the terror holding their small town hostage.
But something is waiting for them. She may look sweet and innocent, but the friends are about to find out that pure evil can exist in the smallest of packages.
She’s out there. And while you may not know her name or what she looks like, the local kids will tell you if you ask, that you should fear for your life from the girl who hid in the trees.
From the dark mind of Steve Stred, the author of Wagon Buddy, YURI and Invisible comes this fast-paced, seat of your pants coming-of-age tale. A quick, violent, bleak read, The Girl Who Hid In The Trees will make you think twice about those sounds you hear far off in the woods.