Friday 1 July 2016

REVIEW: Alex Kimmell - the Idea of North

Genre: Horror
Publisher: Shadow Work Publishing
Publication Date: 22nd Sept 2015
Pages: 197


A copy of the Idea of North was sent to Confessions of a Reviewer by the author, Alex Kimmell, in exchange for an honest review. This is said review. This book is published by Shadow Work Publishing.


This was sent to Confessions and reviewed before Alex joined the team.

Bit of a story behind this one. If things had gone to plan, I would have had a review of this done last year when it just came out, but things happen sometimes and it takes a little longer to do. It had been on my radar for a while because it had been recommended to me by a few people. I have never read Alex Kimmell before and with the stature of the people recommending this book, I couldn’t wait to get my teeth into it.

So what did I think? Was it worth the amount of time it took for me to get to it?

Dalton plays the piano. A lot. He plays every day. Him on one piano while his two sisters, and mother, play on theirs as well. Music is very important in their family. Dalton has no idea why though.

Whenever the music plays, great storms ravage the country. Storm chasers capture an image of a man standing in the middle of one of these great storms. Who is he and what has he to do with Dalton?

He has no idea. Everyone else seems to know though.

Straight to it. Dalton is the main man character wise in this one. Or is he? He is a quiet, unassuming sort who loves to play the piano but probably doesn’t have enough faith in himself. His sisters, Eliza and Mary, seem to be more accomplished. His mother certainly is. Aderato is a mysterious man/being/demon/god that seems to control the weather when the music is played. Why does he do this? What is his goal? You have to read to find that bit out.

Even is a mysterious girl in her own rite that Dalton falls for, and this causes problems for everyone. She is a very troubled soul that I suspect needs more comfort than the chaos she gets with Dalton.

There are a host of others that pop in and out of this story. The gang of storm chasers that are stereotypical in the fact that they are always looking for the big one. They are a mismatch of so many different psyches that it is a wonder they can work together.

The plot? Well now. This is the type of story that I think the definition of the word plot, has very cleverly been left open to the individual interpretation of the reader. To tell you my interpretation would mean I would need to tell you the story and I am not prepared to do that. So, without trying to give anything away about what actually happens, let me tell you about the writing.

This, my friends, is a story that will whisk you off your feet Wizard of Oz style.

The story revolves (excuse the pun) around storms and the wind. You will feel like the room you are sitting in is constantly spinning, keeping you feeling dizzy and sometimes confused, but forever entertained, like you are on a huge roller coaster. This story is so atmospheric that, for the most of it, I sat with permanent goose bumps. You know when you get that shiver up your back and you say that someone just walked over your grave? I think my gravestone must have been placed outside the busiest place in the world because that is all I felt. The entire time I was reading this.

Don’t ask me why. I have no idea. It just gave me a feeling that the main bad person in the story was standing behind me watching me as I read. It really freaked me out. I like to read for a while at night, in the dark, when I climb into bed. Couldn’t do it with this one. I was too scared.

In amongst all of this wonder I do have a negative. There are a few stories going on in the book that all interweave and come together at a few various points. Some of them I found a bit confusing. I would have liked them all to have been tied together a bit better. It seemed as if they were all going to come together at the end but still felt a bit disjointed.

In saying that, what a wonderful story this is. This is the sort of book you need to read while totally letting your mind wander and roam about the different ethereal levels that are described during the creepy times. Alex Kimmell hit the nail on the head with these scenes and really transported me to a place where I could almost feel the wind and the rain on my face when I was reading.

It is a horror story with a difference. What I would probably call the thinking man’s horror story. It’s more literary than most horror stories I have read. You know what though? I loved that. It was like I was reading a grown-up’s horror book and wasn’t supposed to understand the lovely words and the way they were put together. I did though and I thought they were wonderfully put together.

After reading this I have decided to hunt out more books from Alex Kimmell. Imagine my delight when I discovered I already have The Key To Everything on my Kindle! I think this one might get bumped up the queue.

To summarise: one of the creepiest and most atmospheric horror stories I have read in a while. Hard to put this one in a sub-genre but this is the one for you if like the visual aspect of reading a book. This one will literally pick you up and carry you away.

General rating:

★★★★ nearly perfect.

Horror rating:

★★★★★ creepy as hell.

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


Book Synopsis:

When piano prodigy, Dalton Beaufort, plays his music people die.

Devastation is all that remains as storms of unprecedented size rage across the country side.

An elite group of Storm Trackers catch on camera a strange shape at the base of the largest tornado ever recorded.

Uncanny haunted melodies play upon the gales as whirlwinds churn and blow the world away.

Dalton must do everything in his power to discover what links him to the mysterious tempests, and avoid traveling along the path of a grim family tradition.

After all, death and music run in the family.

similar to most humans, alex kimmell is made from a high percentage of dihydrogen monoxide.he inhales oxygen and exhales carbon dioxide.

to provide energy for survival, he consumes necessary resources.

with his spouse, he has two male offspring.

they reside together in the smallest american state.

his family’s two short legged canines keep the squirrels at bay.

he has nightmares…

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

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