Michael W. Garza's NeverHaven was published by NeverHaven Press in October 2018.
Information about Michael W. Garza:
Michael W. Garza often finds himself wondering where his inspiration will come from next and in what form his imagination will bring it to life. The outcomes regularly surprise him and it's always his ambition to amaze those curious enough to follow him and take in those results. He encourages readers to peek at his latest work as well as the material he's published in the past. He sincerely hopes that everyone will find something that astonishes, surprises, or simply scares the heck out of you.
Click here to visit his official website.
Information about Neverhaven:
The bond between twins can bend but never break.
Elizabeth is crazy, at least that’s what everyone believes. She sees things, terrible things no one wants to hear about. Her twin sister, Jessica, used to see things too, but she convinced herself long ago it was all in her head. The sixteen-year-old was left to drift through the chaos alone, abandoned by her other half. But now the darkness has come calling.
Vision of the Elder
This YA Paranormal Series follows the trail of those children forced to bear witness to the sacred rites of the Cult of the Elder. Their eyes are opened to the darkness beyond the void, and their lives are forever changed.
REVIEW: NEVERHAVEN BY MICHAEL W. GARZA
Michael W. Garza's NeverHaven is the first novel in the Vision of the Elder series, which is aimed at young adult readers. It's part of the author's Cult of the Elder Mythos.
NeverHaven is an entertaining and atmospheric YA horror novel with Lovecraftian elements. The author has created a fresh and exciting story that will appeal to readers who enjoy reading entertaining and immersive stories. There's something about this novel that immediately grabs hold of the reader's attention, because the story goes straight to the point without unnecessarily long introductions. It's nice that the reader doesn't have to wait long for something to happen.
I normally try to shield myself from YA horror fiction, because I've been more or less disappointed with the quality of several novels. Fortunately, every once in a while novels like NeverHaven are published that restore my faith in YA horror fiction. I found this novel captivating and satisfyingly fast-paced, because the author has come up with a story that has a distinct sense of eldritch dread.
Here's a bit of information about the story:
Elizabeth is in the hospital, because her parents have put her there for observation. Elizabeth sees things, but no one believes her and she has tried to kill herself... One night, Jessica wakes up and feels that something is wrong with Elizabeth. When she goes to see her, she notices several figures standing in the bedroom and two people are standing over her sister. Soon she loses her consciousness after being struck on the head... When Jessica wakes up, Elizabeth has been kidnapped...
The story flows well from start to finish, because Elizabeth's kidnapping serves as a catalyst for the strange and terrifying events that throw the sisters' lives into turmoil.
Michael W. Garza writes fluently about Elizabeth and Jessica. He effortlessly tells of how similar the identical twin sisters are to each other, but also pays attention to differences between them. Just like many twins, they look alike, but are different from each other. The most noticeable difference is that they both have blue eyes, but Elizabeth's other eye is milky white.
The author writes well about what kind of family life Elizabeth and Jessica have. Their family is like a portrait of upper class happiness on the exterior, but things are actually far from being perfect, because their parents are not particularly good at dealing with feelings and emotions. The author also explores what kind of a relationship the sisters have and how they feel about each other.
I was fascinated by Elizabeth's visions, because they were almost like memories, but she didn't remember any of them happening. She saw people watching her, but didn't recognise any of them. No one believed her when she told about her visions and it complicated her life.
The author writes excellently about how Jessica has betrayed her sister by wanting to be normal. Jessica and her sister used to share everything, but when they neared their teens, Jessica decided to be normal. She convinced everybody that she couldn't see or feel anything Elizabeth described to them. This has put a strain on their relationship and has caused a kind of a rift between them.
I like Michael W. Garza's writing style, because he writes about the twin sisters, their problems and their lives in a fascinating way. He also easily creates a creepy and disturbing atmosphere. He delivers plenty of chills and surprises as the story begins to unfold and readers find out what happens to the sisters and what kind of a fate awaits Elizabeth.
I think it's great that Lovecraftian elements have found their way to YA literature, because Lovecraftian weird fiction is one of the most intriguing sub-genres of speculative fiction. This novel will most likely turn many YA readers into fans of Lovecraftian fiction, because the author writes grippingly about the Cult of the Elder and tells of what they are trying to achieve with their evil deeds.
I like the author's approach to Lovecraftian weird fiction, because it's sufficiently original and entertaining. I'm not going to reveal any details about the happenings in this novel, but I can mention that readers who are expecting to see tentacles will not be disappointed. I have to mention that the combination of Lovecraftian elements and YA horror works stunningly well in this novel. To be honest, I was surpised by how well it works, because the author uses Lovecraftian elements sparingly, but effectively to chill and surprise the reader.
Michael W. Garza's NeverHaven is fast-paced horror fiction with Lovecractian elements for YA readers. It's an exciting reading experience that will appeal to YA readers (and also to adult readers), because the story is good and suspenseful. More, please!