Friday 13 May 2016

REVIEW: John C. Foster - Mister White: A Dark Thriller

Genre: Horror / Thriller
Publisher: Grey Matter Press
Publication Date: 5th April 2016
Pages: 278


A copy of Mister White: A Dark Thriller, by John C Foster, was sent to Confessions of a Reviewer by the publisher, Grey Matter Press, in exchange for an honest review. This is said review.

So a week or two ago I read Mister White – The Short Story. I loved it. Absolutely loved it. Shortly after I finished it I was contacted by Anthony Rivera over at Grey Matter Press and asked if I fancied a read of the full novel. How could I refuse this one?

I was filled with a little trepidation though. I had heard all the rants and raves about it but I was concerned that it might not hold up in a novel length story. This is what I thought.

Lewis is on the run. He doesn’t know from what though. He only knows from whom. Someone has mentioned His name and He has Lewis in His sights. Lewis must warn his wife and daughter to disappear. As quickly as they can. He needs to get to them before He does.

Flintlock is gripped by fear. Strange things are happening that no one can explain. Gerard is tasked with protecting his niece and her daughter. He has no idea what from, but knows the strange happenings are connected to them.

Mister White travels fast when someone speaks his name.

There are so many characters of significance in this story I can’t possibly mention them all. I wouldn’t want to either because I’m not a spoiler type of guy. The main ones you need to know about are of course Lewis, his wife Cat and their daughter Hedde. Lewis is a man with a lot of regrets and secrets where his family is concerned. Now the chips are down, he knows exactly what he has to do. Cat is not totally innocent in things. She has secrets of her own that she believes no one knows. Hedde knows it all. Well she thinks she does. She certainly knows the pain of watching her family implode.

Gerard is the strong redneck type. Quiet, with his own sorrows to bear but loyal to the very end. Especially where protecting his family is concerned.

On the bad side of things, we have a plethora of people either on the run, or chasing, or hiding. Double crossing is the name of the game in a lot of this. That’s what you get with espionage.

Then there is Mister White. Nope. Not giving you nothing.

This type of story is hard to write characters that are believable in my opinion. You have the make believe world of spies, and the make believe world of the dark, supernatural. Combining those two elements could make a story doubly unbelievable so your characters have to shine through. John C Foster has it licked. There is not one person in this story, no matter how long they may survive, that is not believable. From the very first second a new character is described, you are sucked into their lives and get to know them very fast. You don’t need a huge, long back story to get into their heads and understand them. For a story that moves as fast as this one does, that is very important.

The plot? Nope. Not going there. I cannot possibly tell you anything to do with it. OK, just a little bit. There is someone, or something, called Mister White. When someone mentions his name bad things happen. No one knows when or how, but they do. No one knows where he comes from or how he gets to where he is going but he does. That’s it.

The one thing I can tell you with certainty is that this story is one of the creepiest things I have read in years. Do you know what astounded me about it though? It was effortless. You know sometimes when you read a story and you know that the author is pushing and doing all he can to make you scared, and raise the tension as much as possible? John C Foster just tells a story. The way he tells it though will make you poop your pants. I could just imagine him sitting in a rocking chair, totally chilled out, reading this book as if it was a fairy tale and it would still scare you.

From the very first sentence there is an atmosphere in this story that enshrouds you. It makes you feel like you are surrounded by a mysterious fog that won’t clear until you put the book down. You know what though? It doesn’t go away. It stays with you until you have completely finished the book then hangs around for a little longer just to ensure you get creeped out to the max.

This is a quote from my review of the short story:

“Fear. That is the word that I think most describes my mood while reading this. You can feel it. Smell it. Almost taste it. When you see the character’s jump and look behind them to see who is there, you do it yourself. When you see them run, you feel like getting up and running yourself. You know when they are caught, they have no chance.”

Multiply that by one hundred for the full novel. I honestly haven’t felt this creeped out reading a story in a long time.

Mr Foster has combined the thriller with the dark, the horror, the supernatural. Not an easy combination. I have seen some writers totally destroy it. This is superb though. If you like any of these genres you will love this. Be prepared to poop your pants though.

To summarise: superbly written, dark, horrific story that is full of tension and suspense and leaves you with an absolute hunger for more of the same. I want much much more of this!

General rating:

★★★★★ super stuff!

Thriller / Horror rating:

★★★★★ and again!

If you would like to help support Confessions of a Reviewer, then please consider using the links below to buy Mister White: A Dark Thriller or any other books from John. This not only supports me but also lets me know how many people actually like to buy books after reading my reviews.


Book Synopsis:

In the shadowy world of international espionage and governmental black ops, when a group of American spies go bad and inadvertently unleash an ancient malevolent force that feeds on the fears of mankind, a young family finds themselves in the crosshairs of a frantic supernatural mystery of global proportions with only one man to turn for their salvation.

Combine the intricate, plot-driven stylings of suspense masters Tom Clancy and Robert Ludlum, add a healthy dose of Clive Barker’s dark and brooding occult horror themes, and you get a glimpse into the supernatural world of international espionage that the chilling new horror novel MISTER WHITE is about to reveal.

John C. Foster’s MISTER WHITE is a terrifying genre-busting suspense shocker it was meant to be and will, once and for all, answer the question you dare not ask: “Who is Mister White?”

John C. Foster was born in Sleepy Hollow, NY, and has been afraid of the dark for as long as he can remember.

A writer of thrillers and dark fiction, Foster lives in New York City with his lady, Linda, and their dog, Coraline. Dead Men is his first novel and his newest, Mr White, has just been released.

And for more about John, visit his site or find him on social media:

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