Novella Review: Dead Five's Pass by Colin F. Barnes
Genre: Horror, Science Fiction
Publisher: Dark Fuse
Expected Publication: February 18, 2014
When a new cave is discovered in the Rocky Mountains, no one considered the terrible consequences that would follow.
A volunteer mountain rescuer dealing with the loss of a child, the break-up of a relationship and the grief of a rescue gone wrong, Carise Culey isn't sure she's the right person for the job when she receives an emergency call. A climber is missing, presumed dead, and his girlfriend is found bloodied, beaten and catatonic with fear.
Carise soon realizes the discovery of the cave is worse than anyone could have imagined and learns of another group of teenagers already on their way there. With the onset of harsh winter weather, and the threat of an unknown evil, she reaches out to her ex-boyfriend and fellow rescue volunteer, Marcel, for help.
The two must travel to the cave to save the kids, themselves, and perhaps all of humanity…
Dead Five's Pass is a Novella I went into with only moderate expectations. Sure it sounded good but so had many others with similar premises and those all fell flat. So naturally I was quite surprised when I found myself actually being scared by the unknown presence slaughtering all those poor souls in Dead Five's Pass. Oh, and die they did. This little Novella is certainly Horror filled and not for the weakly stomached. Good for me but might be a little off putting for some.
One of the best parts about this Novella is that it didn't shy away from Character or plot development despite its length. If you like back story this Novella has plenty. Angst ridden romance more your liking? Yup, it has that as well. Action packed sequences that will get your heart pumping? Bingo, included. Dead Five's Pass is a near perfectly packaged full length novel that just so happens to be in Novella form. It's good and it shows with every turn of the page.
Another thing I really enjoyed was the Horror. The story is gore filled but each death serves a purpose to propel the story forward rather than being brutal for no other reason than shock factor. If I could adequately describe the story I'd call it a cross between Aliens, Dante's Peak and Super 8 and even then I'd have to say that it still feels unique all its own.
I'm pleased to say that not only were my expectations met but exceeded. Dead Five's Pass is a Novella that I didn't want to end and one I hope continues on in the future. Based on the ending I'm hoping that might come true. If you like Horror than Dead Five's Pass is a Novella you don't want to miss. With that being said, I'll be rating Dead Five's Pass ★★★★.
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Colin F. Barnes: