Haunted Forest Tour ★★★☆☆

hauntedforesttour (Custom)This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission 
Title:
Haunted Forest Tour
Series: ———-
Author: James Moore & Jeff Strand
Rating: 3 of 5 Stars
Genre: Horror
Pages: 270
Format: Digital Edition

 

Synopsis:

A forest grew up in one day in New Mexico, destroying a small town and killing almost all of the inhabitants. The survivors reported seeing otherworldly monsters.

The owner of the land opened up a tourist attraction where people could take a ride on armored buses through the edge of the forest to see the various creatures. He also hired cryptozoologists to study the remains of the creatures. The Haunted Forest Tour has a 100% safety rating and no one has ever gotten hurt.

For months now, crew have been laying down new track to the center of the forest. On Halloween a select group of 80 people are invited to go deeper into the forest than anyone has ever gone before. Unfortunately for them, the power goes out on the track and an accident occurs between 2 of the buses. Also, the monsters begin attacking, something they’ve never done before. The tourists split, some staying in the buses to wait for rescue and others to try to strike out and rescue themselves. Those who stay are eaten rather quickly.

The group we follow make it to an abandoned facility within the Forest. They realize they’ve gone even deeper into the forest and one of them strikes out on his own to follow the rails back to the edge of the Forest. The remainder are split up. It is revealed that the Forest is an intrusion from a demonic dimension and that the ruler has made a deal with the owner of Haunted Forest Tours. This demon needs a willing sacrifice AND a willing host to fully integrate his dimension into ours. He gets the sacrifice but is outwitted and some other humans destroy his host.

The whole forest and all of its denizens return to the their dimension and only a few people survive.

 

My Thoughts:

I have to admit, I was hoping for more. Part of that was me wanting answers well before the authors chose to give it. I didn’t learn that the Forest was a hell pocket until well past the 50% mark and up to that point I was trying to figure out what was going on. The deal with the devil explained almost everything but it came too late for me, as I was too distracted by my own questions up to that point.

I was also disappointed in how the military reacted. They’re shown as a bunch of lackwits and idiots. I was hoping for something a bit more in the vein of Through the Looking Glass by John Ringo.

The violence was pretty high but felt like some sort of B movie violence where it was just so splatterific that it moved into silly territory when that was NOT the intention. There was one torture scene near the end though that was just grotesque.

For a horror book, I never felt a moments dread. Horror is atmospheric, not just describing people getting killed horrifically. This had as much atmosphere as an empty elevator.

Overall, I don’t feel like my time was wasted, as I got all the splatterific I could handle but there was no nuance and the whole supernatural side of things was just shoehorned in. The ending seemed to happen in 5 pages and authorial handwavium definitely occurred. This book didn’t leave me wanting to seek out any more by either author.

★★★☆☆

 

bookstooge (Custom)

 

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26 thoughts on “Haunted Forest Tour ★★★☆☆

  1. Mischenko says:

    Darn! This sounds like it would be so good after reading the blurb. Love the cover too. Better luck on your next read.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sharon Barrow Wilfong says:

    It’s funny you should say that the interesting part came too late. As I was reading your review I was thinking, “This is not interesting at all,” until it turns out that a demon from another dimension is behind it all.

    And your comments about horror being atmospheric are right on. I am currently writing (attempting to write, ha,ha) a ghost story, from a Christian perspective, and I realize that, although I think my story line is good, there is a lot more to a story than the plot. The dialogue needs to be interesting, the characters need to be people the reader cares about, etc… hence my challenge to make a successfully interesting and suspenseful story.

    My blurb would sound great. It’s the rest I’m working on.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This sounds like one of those “horror of the week” B movies you sometimes stumble on while channel surfing, the ones you know are terrible but start watching anyway – like the proverbial train wreck one witnesses without the chance of doing anything about it.
    The cover image is quite intriguing, though… 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. That’s too bad. The synopsis was interesting but execution is the most important part.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Nicole says:

    Sounds like an interesting concept, but not enough skill in the execution. That’s a shame.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Shame this didn’t really deliver on the horror aspect for you, but good it wasn’t a total waste of time.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I’m trying to think if I’ve ever read a book with two authors and I can’t think of one. Whenever I see two authors I immediately think “ghost-writer” and avoid it. With your review, I think I’ll keep avoiding them.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I believe an empty elevator could totally be super eerie, in the hands of the right author! 😀 But yes, this does sound like the execution wasn’t there.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I actually loved this book because it was the over the top b movie type gorefest! But that’s the fun thing about books-no two readers have exactly the same reaction to stuff and it is fun to see how others find it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bookstooge says:

      I believe it was actually your review that got this book on my radar. And I agree with you about the dynamics of different readers and the same book. It really helps fine tune how we decide what books to pick based on what others have said 🙂

      Like

  10. Nice review! I’ll definitely check this one out. Seems promising.

    Like

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