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Shadows of the Past Paperback – January 2, 2012


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 238 pages
  • Publisher: Abis Books (January 2, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0615583180
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615583181
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,909,059 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

The author  knows how to create a plot with unique characters and an engaging story.  Patricia Russo (Author of Shiny Thing)

This, the debut novel from Richard Schiver, will pique constant reader's curiosity just enough: here we are presented with uncomplicated plot strands and Lovecraftian overtones evocative (perhaps) of something fashioned from the early pen - or pseudonyms - of Dean Koontz.
Mathew Tait: Hellnotes

SHADOWS OF THE PAST is a horror-filled ride that left me white-knuckling all the way to the end! The subplots, such as the death of his wife, and the injury to his son, as well as his teen daughter's escapades into crime, lend an even more realistic feel to the story.
Charlene Gamble Literary R&R

I enjoyed reading SHADOWS OF THE PAST.  The story is an engaging one that for the most part is well-written and suitably frightening.  Character development is good and we are given enough of Sam's past to pity him, while at the same time wanting to tell him to get it together already!
Colleen Wanglund, Horror Fiction Review

SHADOWS OF THE PAST is a nail-biting, spine-chilling read that will take readers to the edge of their seats! Richard  knows how to crank up the tension and bring out the scary monsters:
Fiona Ingram Readers Favorite Book Reviews

I would place Mister Schiver's talents in league with Neil Gaiman's. He shines in his ability to let dialogue propel a story. That is trickier than it may seem, but the talented writers do it with an effortless grace.
T.W Brown Brutally Honest Reviews

From the Author

Inspiration for Shadows of the Past

What if an advanced alien race visited this world when the super continent Pangea still existed?

What if they brought their own food source that seeded the planet with the genes that would one day become man?

What if they became trapped on the continent that would become Antarctica, and were forced to evolve to survive, emerging as today's modern Penguin?

What if their essence has been awakened, and they want their world back?


In the early nineteenth century Edgar Allen Poe visited the South Polar Region in his only novel length work titled: The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket. The work relates the tale of the young Arthur Gordon Pym, who stows away aboard a whaling ship called the Grampus. Various adventures and misadventures befall Pym, including shipwreck, mutiny, and cannibalism, before he is saved by the crew of the Jane Guy. Aboard this vessel, Pym and a sailor named Dirk Peters continue their adventures further south. Docking on land, they encounter hostile black-skinned natives before escaping back to the ocean. The novel ends abruptly as Pym and Peters continue towards that mysterious region around the South Pole.

Many believe H.P. Lovecraft continued Poe's tale with his novella, At The Mountains of Madness. that was serialized in Astounding Stories from February to April of 1936. Lovecraft twice cites Poe's disturbing and enigmatic story in his text, and explicitly borrows the mysterious cry Tekeli-li from Poe's work. In a letter to August Derleth, Lovecraft wrote that he was trying to achieve with his ending an effect similar to what Poe accomplished in Pym.
In August 1938 the novella, Who Goes There, by John W Campbell writing under the pen name Don A. Stuart was published in Astounding Stories. It's been said Campbell wrote the story to show Lovecraft how a story of that nature should be written. The story has been adapted for the screen three times. In 1951 as The Thing From Another World, in 1982 as The Thing directed by John Carpenter, and most recently as a prequel to the Carpenter version, also titled The Thing, released in 2011.

In each instance the alien discovery remained trapped in Antarctica. Until now.

More About the Author

Richard has always had a fascination with the macabre. He grew up listening to ghost stories told by his grandmother while screech owls punctuated her words. He acquired a taste for reading at an early age that became a voracious appetite as he grew older. He reads every day, his tastes having become more eclectic, with his interests ranging from horror to historical narratives. The only thing he really looks for is a good story. His goal as a writer is to give the reader a story that will stay with them long after they've closed the cover of the book.

Richard currently lives with his wife in Lavale, MD. When he's not spinning tales of terror he can be found in his wood shop making a mess.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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I strongly recommend this book to anyone who likes horror.
Brandi Hines (Hines and Bigham's Literary Tryst)
This is one book, that once you start, you will not put down until you've reached the very end.
Kat Yares
The way the author's words flow freely makes for an easy read.
LMSchuch

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Kat Yares VINE VOICE on March 31, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
They say the past has a way of catching up to you, and in Shadows of the Past, author Richard Schiver proves the saying beyond a shadow of a doubt. This is one book, that once you start, you will not put down until you've reached the very end.

For those who love the Lovecraftian mythos of Cthulhu, this book will satisfy your hunger for more tales from the myth. For those who have never read Lovecraft - this book will serve as a wonderful introduction to the mythos that has inspired writers for decades.

Well written and edited, Shadows of the Past is a chilling story of things best left alone - but are not. Don't read this at night or when you are alone in your home - the images Schiver invokes are disturbing and will remain with you for a long time.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Bruce J. Blanchard on January 26, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The lesson should be clear: do not dig for relics of the ancient past at the polar ice caps and yet archeological teams don't seem to listen and they have found a twelve inch dagger within a white box. It's far older than anybody can imagine. The relic is stolen in repayment for a gambling debt and the evil is unleashed on the world. The air is icy and tendrils are emerging from the dark, looking for the Chosen One. Those who don't qualify die in horrible ways. Bring in Sam Hardin, a man whose world is falling apart. He is haunted by memories of the death of his wife. He's ready to eat the bullet. He has estranged relations with his daughter Cheryl, a mentally challenged son Frankie, receiving voices from his dead wife, and tended by her sister Michelle. On top of that, he is the Protector for Frankie.
The evil of the dagger, the Old Ones, want back into the world and rule it as they once did. They find their Chosen One in the form of Jack Griffith, an ex-Viet vet and sewer worker. He fights them almost every inch of the way. Destiny will pit Jack on his path of destruction against Sam and his family as the fight turns wicked and murderous.
The Old Ones want Frankie and the forces of evil will take the battle to the very end in a book that once you get into it will dominate your reading to the last word. Twists and turns, betrayals, and mental possessions will life rough for Sam and his family until the barbarous end. Give Shadows of the Past a try and see what you think. The price is right and it's a damned good story.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By TW Brown, Author, Editor, and Reviewer on July 24, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
First admission, I have never read Lovecraft. I know that might seem blasphemous, but it just never came up on my radar. I have read Neil Gaiman, and I would place Mister Schriver's talents in league with Gaiman's. He shines in his ability to let dialogue propel a story. That is trickier than it may seem, but the talented writers do it with an effortless grace. The conversations reveal details without becoming narratives.

The story has a realistic but fantastic bent to it that makes me feel terrible for letting this book sit on my shelf as long as it did. For that, I apologize because Mr. Schiver can spin a heck of a story. Once you start, just know you will be busy for a while. The action scenes flow well and don't seem awkward or blocky. You have no problem visualizing the scenes that play out.

Credit is given to Patricia Russo with the edits and they are well earned. This is a clean read. Combine that with a pace that keeps you so entranced that you cant turn pages quick enough. I was sent a copy of this book by the author for review on the grounds that I give an honest one. In short...BUY THIS BOOK! I won't ask for another free copy from Mr. Schiver, I want to support him buy making purchases...that is the highest praise I can give. And if you wonder why I can heap this much praise and not give this a 5-star review, it is simply because I must now go read Lovecraft to see what the heck I have been missing.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By lq on July 19, 2012
Format: Paperback
I absolutely loved the premise of this novel - what a great concept! This is a very graphic horror novel. The beginning was very engaging and the ending was engrossing and thought provoking. The middle, at times, was somewhat disjointed and overly graphic. I would have loved to have had the premise fleshed out at a more complex (and less graphic) level.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mirrani on May 13, 2012
Format: Paperback
Shadows of the Past brings an alien feel to evil as we follow the existence of a wicked life form, bent on eliminating the human race. Parallel to this is the story of a child who has brain damage from an accident at his birth, who seems to have the gift of bringing people back from near death... at the cost of the lives of another, however. The good and the evil must battle out, but it is those taking care of the good child who must do the battling. The story itself sounds like some kind of twisted science fiction or holy story, but really it is a suspenseful tale of the struggle to reach beyond what you are, survive the end of life as you know it, and save mankind. I could not put it down.

There was some repetition through the story, but it was easy enough to ignore for the most part. I was more distracted by the constant sorrow of the main character, feeling that it was driven home a little too much. Grief lingers, but I think we can understand that without the constant reminders of just how much it does. Also, there were a few elements that were out of place, such as the worry of getting lost while it is snowing and wandering in circles. Depending on how hard it is snowing, wouldn't you be able to avoid your own footprints? I also found it hard to believe that a being out to kill someone wouldn't smash through glass to get at them. Some events like that were simply too convenient.

Overall, this was an enjoyable book that kept me reading to the end. It well matched movies of the same, where you would expect a family to bond through grief as this terrible ordeal occurs to them and to those around them.

Note: Though this book was a free gift from the author, the content of my review was in no way influenced by the gifting.
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