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Friday, September 24, 2021

Review: The Barrens by Joe Goodglass

The Barrens
by Joe Goodglass

Thanks to the author for this gifted novella!

Publisher: Darkstroke Books
Publish Date: July 9, 2021
Kindle Edition
114 Pages
Genre: Horror

A young couple's weekend foray into the woods turns into a night of unimaginable terror…

When Jacob, a Princeton PhD student with an insatiable hunger for fame and fortune, convinces his best friend, Caleb, to shoot a documentary on the Jersey Devil for their DeBunkers YouTube Channel, the boys persuade their girlfriends, Hannah and Blake, to join them on a weekend getaway. The following morning, the group sets out for the Pine Barrens in search of the folk legend, bringing with them camping gear and recording equipment.

Upon their arrival, Jacob receives a text message from GenX-82, an anonymous member of a local film crew who had shot footage of the Jersey Devil six months prior. In exchange for an interview, GenX agrees to take them to the Blue Hole, the site where the entity was last seen. However, halfway through their hike, Caleb is seriously injured, and the group loses contact with the outside world.

With tension mounting as the night sets in, Jacob's trek through the Barrens soon becomes a descent into madness…

My Review:

Ok, Goodglass with the Goodstory!

I really wasn't sure what I was walking into with this horror novella but it delivered! The very beginning had me questioning just how much I may like this as it starts with 4 friends getting ready for their journey and Jacob already chatting with some girl on the internet that his girlfriend doesn't even know about.  Granted it's for their expedition, but that's also another thing that he's not fully upfront about.  Then they get to Pine Barrens and things start going sideways, upside down and no one (not even you, reader) knows what the hell is real and what isn't. GIMME MORE.

I think there could've been a little more work in editing and catching some typos here and there but this didn't bother me much.  Because of the many events that happen, there were times I needed to go back and figure out what just happened because I think I became just as confused as Jacob was for a while.  Which was probably the point, right? *wink*

The last half of the book is my favorite and honestly, I thoroughly enjoyed the ending! The Barrens gives me The Ritual/Midsommar vibes and I wolud 10/10 watch if this ever gets made into an adaptation (fingers crossed).  I can't wait to see what this author has for us next.


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