Widow’s Point

Richard Chizmar and Billy Chizmar. Cemetery Dance, $25 (160p) ISBN 978-1-58767-647-5
Longtime horror author Richard Chizmar teams up with his son, Billy, for a by-the-numbers ghost tale that nonetheless packs a visceral punch. Built in 1838, the supposedly haunted Widow’s Point lighthouse in Harper’s Cove, Nova Scotia, has been plagued by bad luck, including numerous disappearances, a suicide, murders, and even the slaughter of an entire family by its patriarch. It’s stood empty for 30 years. Thomas Livingston, a bestselling author of supernatural nonfiction, decides to stage a stunt and lock himself in the lighthouse for three nights, with only a video camera and audio recorder—no phone or internet. Told entirely in transcripts of recordings (the video camera fails as soon as Livingston walks in the door), the narrative chronicles three days of mounting horror. Poor Livingston encounters stairs that seem to go on forever, tainted food and water, voices from the dark, and even the appearance of a bloody hammer that was used in a series of gruesome murders. Readers will wonder whether the lighthouse is truly cursed or if these occurrences are the fevered imaginings of a disordered mind. No new ground is broken, but this ghost story oozes with atmosphere, enhanced by Glenn Chadbourne’s illustrations throughout. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/2018
Genre: Fiction
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