Tuesday, August 2, 2022

Whiteout #01 - The Snow

Flint Maxwell is an Ohio native and author of horror and fantasy titles. He's authored a post-apocalyptic series called Jack Zombie, co-wrote the Midwest Magic Chronicles novels, and contributed to the short-story collection 25 Gates of Hell featuring horror authors like Brian Keene. The author's own short-story collection, The Bitter Cold, was published in 2018. My first experience with the author is his 2020 five book series of post-apocalyptic novels, Whiteout. I'm starting with the series debut, The Snow, published in multiple formats by Dark Void Press.

Through first-person perspective, readers are introduced to Grady Miller, an Ohio firefighter that experienced a harrowing tragedy that left a little boy dead. Trying to recover from the trauma, Grady pals around with his two childhood friends, Stone and Jonas. The three buddies want to celebrate July 4th in tradition in a lakeside cabin at fictional Prism Lake. The festivities of drinking beer and telling stories is fun for the trio, and the author conveys their friendship and inner-loyalty to the printed page quite well. However, “The Three Musketeers” are about to experience outright horror.

The three awaken to find that it's snowing. On the fourth of July. In Ohio. Once the snow starts falling, it never stops. The friends soon learn that the radio stations and internet are out and soon the power begins to fade. As a blizzard soaks the landscape, the three also learn that their fears, the things that trouble them the most, are becoming real things outside. The dead kid begins calling to Grady from the snow. Dark figures are seen in the distance. Spiders as large as cars start crawling. It's a nightmare scenario. But, is it any good?

For the most part I enjoyed the book for what it was. This is clearly the origin tale, and it ends right when the action begins to escalate. The setup was appropriate, the characters introduced, and doomsday ushered in to create the backbone of the series. I found it to be truly scary at times, but for the most part it's just gloomy and depressing. Like most post-apocalyptic tales, the team-building is a necessity and the survivors have to possess some sort of past tragedy to overcome in the post-apocalypse. It suspiciously reminded me of Christopher Golden's more superior novel Snowblind, which has nearly the same concept.

I plan on reading the next installment soon. I found The Snow to be enjoyable enough to warrant an extended look at the series. Flint Maxwell is creative, has a plan, and forms the story well. Recommended. 

Buy a copy of the book HERE.

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