Horror In The Clouds by Scott Shoyer is a departure from the author's usual zombie novels, and not at all what I've come to expect from his standard of writing. The prologue is fantastic and pulled me in, only to bore the crap out of me with Damien's feelings of inner turmoil. The story picks up a bit once his family reaches the twisted town of Derleth, but everything is filled with darkness and madness...dark darkness and the kind of madness that makes the townsfolk go mad. While concentrating on the descriptions of the darkness and madness, Shoyer neglects the development of his characters. Did I mention the threat of darkness and madness taking over the world?
There are a few redeeming aspects to this story, such as the leviathan in the clouds, the description of the otherworld and the history of the Ancient Ones. The ending also has more action than the rest of the book combined, pulling me back into the story the way the prologue had in the beginning. The epilogue made me wonder if this novel is a stand-alone or the first in a series, but I personally have had enough of the Madness.
I don't know why I keep reading Cthulhu-Lovecraft type of stories. I end up having the worst kind of night terrors...leviathans hiding below the surface of dark waters, reaching for me with their tentacles. I try to shape-shift into a dragon to fly away, but those monstrous bastards have quite a reach. Sometimes I'm having an OBE and I feel like something is hunting me in the clouds, so I race back to my body, always fearing I might get caught one night.
I've always wondered what happens to the authors who write these stories. Do they start seeing shadows where shadows shouldn't be? Do they ever look up at the sky and feel like something sinister is closing in on them? Maybe it's like that scene from In The Mouth of Madness, where the author is being manipulated...