Snowblind, by Christopher Golden
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
320 pages, Kindle Edition
Published January 2014
There are aspects of “Snowblind” that make for fantastic horror. Chief among them is Golden’s talent for establishing mood, writing a novel that overall exudes creepiness, accentuating the horror that can easily greet those who step outside in the long dark of winter nights in the chilled air of falling snow. This kind of mood dominates the first portion of the novel, and Golden contrasts the chill of winter with a sort of general warmth and hopefulness in the air of relationships among his characters, a broad cast encompassing several townspeople. I enjoyed the first half of the novel and the slow building towards horror, a horror where the weather seems to take on a sinister life of its own.
However, as with many horrors, the eventual reveal of its nature comes off as far less spooky than the mind may have imagined, and in this case, even a bit melodramatic, leading up to an ending that doesn’t fulfill that promise of the early pages. I know Golden has written media-tie-in stories, and that background shows strongly in the final pages of “Snowblind” where the plot becomes increasingly reminiscent of a network television show, with less darkness and horror and more feel-good wrap up of the more sympathetic characters.
If you are a fan of horror, this could be a worthwhile winter’s night read that will heighten the affect of the novel’s pervasive mood. I imagine many readers won’t be as disappointed with the novel’s close as I, and I admit that even with that ultimate disappointment at the end that I did enjoy the overall creepy journey.