Review: Blackout by Tim Curran

Author: Tim Curran
Genre: Horror, Science Fiction
Publisher: Dark Fuse
Expected Publication: August 19, 2014

In the midst of a beautiful summer, in a perfectly American suburban middle-class neighborhood, a faraway evil is lurking, waiting to strike the unsuspecting residents.

First come the flashing lights, then the heavy rains, high winds, and finally a total blackout. But that's only the beginning...

When the whipping black tentacles fall from the sky and begin snatching people at random, the denizens of Piccamore Way must discover the terrifying truth of what these beings have planned for the human race.


Its been awhile since I've read a proper alien invasion type story, so, when I heard of Blackout I knew it was a book I'd have to read and since I am a such a huge fan of the Dark Fuse novellas to say I had my bar set high would be an understatement. Thankfully, I was not to be disappointed, not only did Blackout meet my expectations but it far exceeded them.

One of the things I really enjoyed about Blackout was the set up to the story. Like another famous Science Fiction story called War of the Worlds the creatures sort of come out of nowhere, the events leading to the cripplig of society just sort of happen and neither the reader or the characters knew when it was coming. This book started this way and I liked that. I also liked how they described the reasons why the attack happens. While it didn't make me sympathize with the bad guys it did make me think. I mean, to them, our lives might have been seen as inconsequential compared to their highly evolved species. Were just an group of fish in the vast ocean of space waiting to be baited,hooked and captured. Its only a matter of time. Grim maybe but made for a good story.

Another thing I enjoyed were the characters. Since were dealing essentially with an entire neighborhood under seige we meets many different people throughout the story.  I especially liked the main protagonist since he was just as confused by the turn of events as the rest of us. He really reminded me of Thomas Jane's character from The Mist. An every man sort of guy in the right place at the wrong time. 

Now, while I enjoyed Blackout my biggest complaint with the story was that it read very similar to another book called The Taking by Dean Koontz. I kept thinking back to that story while reading this one and so I guess you could say that was a bit distracting in terms of my overall experience reading this. Also, while the ending was pretty much perfect, I do feel like it left room for more story. Usually the Dark Fuse books are stand alone stories but this felt more like a series starter by books end. While this isn't necessarilly a bad thing, it didn't give me the satisfaction of being a completed single story either.  

Final Thoughts
Despite its few minor flaws, Blackout is no doubt my favorite book by this Author that I've read thus far. I really loved how the story was scary in all the right places feeding my love of Horror yet blended in the science fiction element perfectly with the creepy tentacled creatures.  I really hope the author revisits the world at some point showing us what has happened since the end of this one, I know I am certainly curious. 
With that being said, I'll be rating Blackout by Tim Curran.

*Copy reviewed provided by the publisher. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated in an which way for providing them.


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