The Patience Of A Dead Man: Michael Clark
Reviewed By Brian Bogart
He faced Tim, seeming to know he had been followed. From this distance the features of his face were indiscernible; it was nearly impossible to make out the details; eyes, nose, mouth. He could only see two shady spots that were the boy’s eye sockets. He looked like a skull.
They stared at each other for what seemed like an eternity. Tim was too spooked to stand still for long and nervously raised a hand. Howdy, neighbor…
Fixer-uppers. Sometimes, they seem too good to be true. We have all heard horror stories regarding them: whether it’s to do with the construction woes or unstable foundation problems or the god-awful amount of work that goes into them- they can really be a gamble.
Lucky for us readers, there’s something more supernatural at foot on these grounds. Welcome to “The Morbidly Fascinating Tale of a Haunted Handyman”…
Tim, recently divorced, has sunk all his money and energy into this house. He is determined to turn a profit. A man can only lose so much before he takes matters into his own hands. It’s just too bad the other residents are vying for his attention. Bad for Tim- but damn good for us. Oh, and that ghostly child he’s been following? That is nothing compared to the wraith-like form of a woman keeping a close eye on the property….
“The Patience of a Dead Man” does a great job of melding mystery/thriller with a haunted house tale. It’s not the usual spook-fest, with multiple ghosts vying for attention and understanding from Tim- and the reader, too. This book is helped by the short, punchy chapters, which give the person reading the incentive to read the next one since it was only a few pages. (“Just one more before bed!”) It gives the impression of being a quicker read, even when Clark occasionally dips into rehashing certain details for the less attentive readers’ sake as the plot unfolds. (That is often a problem with the mystery formula in general sometimes, not just this author.)
Honestly, that’s the only small quibble I have with this book- other than that, the characters are well-written and I like how the history of the house and its deceased is spread amongst the chapters.
For the majority of the book, it’s crisp, detailed and clean- with a ghostly chill here and there as the pages fly by. The quality of the writing alone makes it easy to forgive the few moments of extraneous detail.
It is an interesting and unique take on the tried and true haunted house story- complete with decaying flesh and the buzzing of flies.
You want to know what happened to the spirits haunting the novel just as much as Tim does- from the safety of your own home- hopefully, a house much less haunted.
The Patience Of A Dead Man
He just spent everything on a house in disrepair, but he didn’t know someone was waiting inside.
Tim Russell just put his last dollar on a handyman’s dream; a quaint but dilapidated farmhouse in New Hampshire. Newly single after a messy divorce, his plan is to live in the house as he restores it for resale. To his horror, as soon as the papers are signed and his work starts, ghosts begin to appear. A bone-white little boy. A woman covered in flies. Tim can’t afford to leave and lose it all, so he turns to his real estate agent Holly Burns to help him decide whether he has any shot at solving his haunted problem. Can they solve the mystery before he loses his investment…or maybe his life?
Brian Bogart is an American author, residing in Northern Ireland. His love of genre fiction started at an early age, consuming every horror and fantasy book available. He has been published in various degrees online and contributed a short fiction piece, “TOCSIN”, to The One Million Project (OMP) Thriller Anthology in an effort to raise money for cancer research and the homeless. He loves to share his enthusiasm for the horror genre with others and help promote other authors.
His latest story, alongside many other authors, can be found in the pages of EPIC FANTASY SHORT STORIES, coming soon from Flame Tree Publishing.
Purchase OMP THRILLER here: Amazon UK
Preorder EPIC FANTASY SHORT STORIES anthology here: Flame Tree Press
Kendall Reviews https://kendallreviews.com/tag/brian-bogart/
Official Blog https://www.dreamdarklyblog.wordpress.com