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Shadows of the Past Paperback – January 2, 2012
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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
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.
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Top customer reviews
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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.
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.
When I first started reading this novel it was hard to remember all the characters, they came in so fast and switched from one scene to another quickly. However the writing style and character drama kept me intrigued. After a few chapters I felt I knew all the people well enough that I was not turning pages back to find out who this or that person was.
Sam is a police officer who has had a rough life, we all know the stresses that come with losing a loved one or feeling alone, but Sam has to overcome forces that are out of this world! I think my jaw was clenched through the entire story. I felt what the characters did, at one point I even yelled at the book, I never did have to put it in the freezer though.
Richard Schiver has a way of making every possible fear come alive in his novel, everything I am afraid of materialized in the text… I am not exaggerating…everything! But I never put the book down, I couldn’t! I was so into the plot, I just had to know how it turned out.
I strongly recommend this book to anyone who likes horror. I have read every Stephen King novel ever written, even the Bachman books, and Richard Schiver is right up there on his level for me. Great job Rick, keep on writing!
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.
The way the author's words flow freely makes for an easy read. With well-rounded characters, you will find yourself drawing parallels to your own life. As the story progresses, the readers will no doubt see that all the character's have something in their past that they now regret. It is wonderful to see that even fictional characters have skeletons in their closets, as so many of us do in this day and age. I highly recommend this book for anyone one out there.
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