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{November 7, 2011}   {Reivew} Seed by Ania Ahlborn

From Goodreads: In the vine-twisted swamps of Louisiana, the shadows have teeth.

Jack Winter has spent his entire life running from something no one else can see. His childhood is his darkest secret, but after a near fatal accident along a deserted road, the darkness he was sure he’d escaped rears its ugly head… and smiles.

But this time, he isn’t the only one who sees the soulless eyes of his past. This time, his six-year-old daughter Charlie leans into his ear and whispers: “Daddy, I saw it too.”

And then she begins to change.

Faced with reliving the nightmares of his childhood, Jack watches his daughter spiral into the shadows that had nearly consumed him twenty years before.

But Charlie isn’t the only one who’s changing.

Jack never outran the darkness. It’s been with him all along.

And it’s hungrier than ever.
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I have to start off by saying that I am officially creeped out.   Ahlborn has succeeded in writing a horror novel so nerve-wracking, bloody, and schizophrenic that I had to sleep with the lights on.  In fact, I’m still reeling from the ending of this novel.  Just sitting here writing this review, thinking about the situations within the novel… I’ve got chills running up and down my spine.  It’s freaky… the perfect read if you want to psyche yourself out and be scared for days.

Jack Winter is so traumatized by his experiences as a child that, when the symptoms show themselves in his youngest daughter, all he can do is watch as his family’s world is turned upside down and inside out.  While his reactions may seem callous as he sits back and keeps his mouth closed concerning all that is happening around him, it actually makes perfect sense.  He recognizes this evil; an evil he knows cannot be defeated, and its newfound presences causes him to not only relive his trauma from his childhood, but also causes him to shut down and become non-responsive.  I love Ahlborn’s portrayal of Jack, and all the characters, really, as these events are vividly real and life-like, adding to the creep factor within the novel.

I also love Ahlborn’s writing style.  Not only are the prose very beautifully written, but the story flows effortlessly.  I thoroughly enjoyed the back and forth style Ahlborn’s utilizes as she tells of the events in Jack’s present, and then subtly shifts to events in his past, spurring the reader on as more background information is divulged, showing exactly how, and why, Jack is an unresponsive as he is when the evil comes for his daughter.  I loved it!

And the ending?  Oh heavens, the ending… I was not prepared.  My stomach clenched, my eyes bulged, and I was a little bit sick.  But, it works.  In fact, no other ending could fit.  Ahlborn has hit the nail on the head so definitively that there is no room for any other ending.  There never was.  I highly recommend this phenomenal read.  Be prepared to be scared.  Five stars.

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