- File Size: 5344 KB
- Print Length: 170 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: Red Kite Publishing; 2 edition (July 17, 2014)
- Publication Date: July 17, 2014
- Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00LXBQ482
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,540,522 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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The Showing (Mister Jones Mysteries Book 1) Kindle Edition
An Amazon Book with Buzz: "Sweet Sorrow" by David Nicholls
"With fully fleshed-out characters, terrific dialogue, bountiful humor, and genuinely affecting scenes, this is really the full package of a rewarding, romantic read."—Booklist Learn more
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As you can tell from the blurbs, the house is making female estate agents, (realtors), disappear. Since the last person to see the various missing persons before they go missing always seems to be Mr. Jones he is obviously a person of great interest to the police. Here's where it gets interesting. First off, we get a lot of chapters written from Mr. Jones' perspective, in the first person. But then we get alternating chapters written by an omniscient narrator, (who sounds just like Mr. Jones), which set out the police procedural aspect of the story.
This creates a very odd feeling that underlies the general sense of unease created by the possessed house. Who is this Mr. Jones? He professes to know nothing about the "IT" that haunts the house, but he actually seems to know everything about everything that is going on. And he remains unnaturally calm throughout the whole affair. The result is an entertaining deadpan narrative whereby Mr. Jones seems more put-upon than terrified, and merely inconvenienced rather than endangered. He just seems passive and resigned to the entire "possession" thing, which gives the entire book an odd and unsettling, and unique, feel. I got a kick out of that and enjoyed this unusual approach.
Of course, that might all get old but for the fact that our author has generously provided us with a number of interesting supporting characters. We have the frustrated investigating police, the poor saps who are assigned to guard the creepy house, a mellow psychic, and a rather engaging demon hunter. Each adds something a little different to the mix and so the cast is both appealing and unpredictable. This means we don't have a lot of room left for an interesting demon, but they're often the least interesting characters in books like this.
So, well written and intriguing, with a nice bit of thrill and atmosphere and an oddly appealing style. I was happy with this. (Please note that I found this book a while ago while browsing Amazon Kindle freebies. I have no connection at all to either the author or the publisher of this book.)
To break up all the spooky tension, there were a few lighter moments. I couldn’t help smiling at Evie’s collection of books (Cheyenne, by L.L. Wiedmeier; Leah, by A. Baker; and The Binding, by S. Dogra), all of which are real books that you should also check out. And this part had me giggling loud enough to make my family further question my sanity:
"Across town, other resources were being wasted, but at least they weren’t mine. Evans pulled a load of cash out of his pocket and it vanished, just like that, into the pocket of a somewhat blowsy middle-aged lady who called herself a medium.
I put her down as an extra-large."
It takes a lot of skill to write good comedy, and at least as much to write good horror. Will Macmillan Jones excels in both areas. If you haven’t read his Banned Underground series, I highly recommend it.
Top international reviews
by Will Macmillan Jones
Reviewed by J Bryden Lloyd
Writing Style – 4.0/5.0 (Very Good)
There is an almost calm urgency about Jones’ writing style. Not too fast, but not too slow, and very nicely structured to give a lot of simple information in the quickest possible way.
The end result is a very rounded story which feels far longer than the actual read.
Dialogue is strong and balanced, bringing excellent attributes to the characters, whether they are central or tertiary to the plot.
In all, this is a good, solid read.
Character Development – 4.0/5.0 (Very Good)
I have read a number of works where the writer moves between third and first person during the text. This is not an easy thing to do well and not something I particularly enjoy in my reading. Primarily, this is because the line between getting it perfect and digging yourself into a hole is a very fine one.
Nevertheless, this author proves more than competent at the skill of shifting the viewpoints and keeping the flow of the narrative. Not only that, but he uses this switching to enhance the other characters, as well as building the main character.
For this offering, I found the cast were very solid and believable, though the D.I. Peake character felt a little “wobbly” from time to time.
Generally, though, Jones built a nice group of people… and… others… and utilised them very well throughout the read.
Descriptive – 4.0/5.0 (Very Good)
The old “less is more” adage, is a difficult one to apply when you are talking about written descriptive, and although there are a few areas where the scene building is perhaps a little on the light side, I was very impressed by the amount of atmosphere and general descriptive was generated in the story.
Perhaps my preference for good character descriptive is a bit biased, as Jones really only partially delivers on this front, but for the most part, the visuals are strong enough for the reader to fill in a lot of the gaps and, in turn, this allows good immersion into the story.
Language & Grammar – 4.0/5.0 (Very Good)
Grammar usage is to a very high standard, as is the level and knowledge of applying the language used throughout.
I found a couple of words I thought were either wrong or misspelled, but otherwise I thought this was pretty good.
Editing & Formatting – 3.0/5.0 (Okay)
Apologies for being picky...
The few minor spelling/word errors aside, I have a big bug-bear when it comes to page formatting.
New chapters should begin on a new page, but in this case, there seems to just be a few extra line-returns thrown in. This makes the layout feel amateur and unconsidered, which was a great shame.
During the read, I felt there were a couple of occasions where things were said more than once, giving the feeling that perhaps a couple of rewrites had taken place, but not back-checked in the text.
The Prologue text size was different to the rest of the book. Again, this is something that should have been put right.
I was entirely thrown off balance by the Epilogue. Whether by design or accident, this was precisely the same as the Prologue in my purchased Kindle file, which made absolutely no sense, and therefore makes my assumption that this is incorrect.
Irrespective of issues, a careful proofread would have highlighted these.
Plot – 4.5/5.0 (Excellent) – VERY MINOR SPOILERS
This is a superb story, though perhaps missing an Epilogue… and certainly a book which lays down an excellent foundation for what is a whole series of paranormal mysteries, destined to be thrust into the path of the lead character.
In this case, two missing Estate Agents and a house with a disturbing history, where the main character’s family once lived, provides a tense but thrilling central plot around which the author creates his characters and pulls the reader into an excellent tale of supernatural mystery.
The flow of the read and the strength of the characters really make this book, but coupled with the inventive, original plot, this becomes a highly recommended read.
General – 4.0/5.0 (Very Good)
Very good Cover Art here, though I felt the fonts needed to be a little more uniform, and the author name felt far too large. Perhaps smaller with better contrast would have been more effective.
The content is excellent. No, not perfect and not without minor issues, but those things shrink to relative insignificance against the read itself.
An excellent 4 Stars and a high recommendation.
It begins with the disappearance of the female estate agent, apparently from the house where she was showing Mr Jones around...he leaves, she disappears. In come the police, and here it was almost Laurel and Hardyesque, and I don't mean that as an insult. The police go through the motions of an investigation, traditional procedures, last person to see missing person has to be the murderer type of police investigation, keep to procedure and wear the suspect down, and they've convinced themselves for much of the book they are right, and it's here that I visualised the over confidence of Inspector Peake and Sergeant Wilson disappear, and them standing there scratching their heads, as Stan Laurel would have done.
One PC Ian Evans, however, finds conflict between common sense policing and experiences he has whilst on duty at this house...will he believe Mr Jones denial of knowledge? Whilst this day to day routine police investigation is going on, another disappears...and I was expecting a murder enquiry to follow...and so tension and occult references build and build until the climactic evil theories being propounded by Mediums and past experiences unravel to become events that would make even an occult sceptic refuse to enter said house.
Not the ending to be in a house on one's own.
I considered this for both 4 and 5 star and find this for me is borderline hence the 5 stars. This is very different to the slightly zany Goon's humour of The Banned Underground series of books Mr Macmillan Jones has written, but scarily enjoyable.
The mystery deepens as the story progresses and typical ghostly happenings are hinted at and begin to manifest. I was thrown just a little when a chapter change moved from third person to first person, but otherwise the writing is engaging and I found myself wondering what had happened to the missing people and exactly what the nature of this ghost might be. The characters were nicely developed and the story held interest.
The mystery of the house unfolds very slowly, keeping the reader on edge and wondering the exact nature of the ghost. Hints begin to seep in slowly and there is an odd twist about halfway through that I didn't see coming. I love it when an author can surprise me.
The creep factor also escalates around halfway. I started finding it difficult to stop between chapters at this point as events started moving more quickly and the story earned its place in the Horror genre with some nasty happenings that veered into less typical ghostly events. There was a certain amount of comedy to break up the tension and that might have stolen some of the suspense, but the big climax was imaginative and could rival Dennis Wheatley for pure fantasy ritual and demonic activity.
A little of the creep factor remained as the story finished and I can imagine it all flooding back next time I look at a potential new house.
The plot was well thought out, the characters believable & I felt sympathy for the way their actions were described. Not a book to read if you are impressionable I recon but that is an indicator of how well it was written. If Mr. Jones comes 'to life' in another novel I could ber tempted to purchase another book by this interesting writer. Only 4 stars as I don't know much about this background.
The author describes the approach to the house in his prologue which beautifully sets the scene for the creepy atmosphere which pervades the house and the story. The characters are well created. I really felt for the police officers who had the unenviable duty of standing watch over the building which terrified them, especially after dark. Eventually, there's a climactic stand-off between the entity and the `good guys' which includes a young policeman who has taken a shine to one of the missing women. Nice bit of love interest here. It's very creepy and an exciting read. Recommended (unless you're too scared!)
The story draws you in at a measured pace, letting the eerie feel build, the tension of unseen malevolence mount, without ever letting the pace become turgid.
The horror, or perhaps more accurately the fear, arises out of skillful under-statement; it's what's left unsaid that really brings the shadows, the chills, and the goosebumps to life.
All told, if this was a movie, I'd have been watching from behind the sofa.
Why did it always feel like there was a chilled breeze inside it.
A humorous but very creepy tale of a demonic house, lots of atmospherics, likeable and believable characters .
I was unable to put this book down, so riveting was the story and possibly the scariest story I have read in a long time .
More so because my daughter is an estate agent and the names are weirdly similar !!!