Book Title: End of Mae
Author: Angela Yuriko Smith
Date Published: 15 November 2013
Mae was a born writer. Her life's passion was to find the ultimate story. In her quest to find the truth behind the Jersey Devil disappearances, Mae uncovers something much more sinister wandering the Whitebog area at night.
Little did she know that the ultimate story would be her own... and she'd by dying to tell it.
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
This is a novella with an intriguing take on the myth of the Jersey Devil.
Mae is a journalist, determined to get the scoop of her career. I did like this character and felt for her as she came face to face with evil. However, I felt that she was rather reckless and thoughtless in going into a deadly situation without back up.
This is an intriguing story. I am not a huge fan of horror but, since a friend of mine who is recommended it to me, I decided to give it a try. I am not familiar with the myth of the Jersey Devil, as I am not American, so some of the references went over my head. However, that being said, this story captured my attention and I didn't put the book down until I had finished it.
I am not quite sure if I liked the story or not. Unfortunately, although the premise is good, there were a few plot holes which caused a problem when there was no context and I felt a little lost. It certainly is intense and made me want to keep reading, but it was horrifying too. I suppose it's like watching an horrific accident happen in slow motion. I had a "rabbit caught in the headlights" feeling as I read this story. The character Alichino/Miss Prym sent a shiver up my spine. I am not one hundred percent sure what type of creature he/she is. However, I certainly wouldn't want to meet it anytime soon!
I certainly got chills with the sadistic/psychotic nature shown by Heylel. He had a Dr Jeckell/Mr Hyde thing going on. His motives were not explored as fully as they could have been by the author. Gratitude doesn't always equate to love, but Heylel is, in my eyes, extremely selfish, arrogant and conceited in believing that Mae would fall in love and into his arms when he played the hero in his twisted game. He comes across as a real monster, with no redeeming qualities apart for charm. In other words, a psychopath.
However, it was Mae's attitude I found a little confusing. Yes, she is a writer and extremely curious, but I couldn't understand her not trying to escape. Fear can cause people to act differently, but she acted as if she had Stockholm Syndrome. Scary!
Don't get me wrong, this is not a bad story, but without that context and holes filled, it comes across as a very disturbing read. It unsettled me deeply. I guess this was the intent of the author and she certainly succeeded!
Angela Yuriko Smith has written an intriguing debut horror story. I loved her fast paced writing style, which was very descriptive and gave the story intensity, but felt that the flow was slightly affected by the plot holes and missing context. I hope that she will expand her story to flesh out these issues. If she does, this book will be a fantastic horror story.
I recommend this novella if you love horror or dark fantasy. - Lynn Worton
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Angela Yuriko Smith works for a weekly newspaper by day, blogs at Dandilyon Fluff by night and writes spooky stories as often as possible in between. Her published works include fiction and nonfiction across multiple genres and she has been included in various anthologies and online publications. In the past she has served as a host for JournalJabber online radio talk show and was once interviewed on National Public Radio for her nonfiction work as a military spouse.
Mother of four, author of more, she is on a desperate search to find a cure for sleeping. If you need to know more, visit her at dandifluff.com.