Since becoming a part of A Murder of Storytellers and Nevermore Edits, I've begun reading and writing in genres that I typically wouldn't have approached before. One of those is horror. It's funny because I enjoy the works of Edgar Allen Poe, who, let's face it, had a great handle on things horrific and macabre and that tried the human spirit.
With all of that in mind, it brings me to this great addition to the genre, Of Noble Blood. This gothic horror work by E. P. Ferguson has been likened to the horror version of Downton Abbey or, as author Mac Boyle put it, John Carpenter's The Thing meets Downton Abbey. Those descriptions will give you a great idea for the mood and setting of the piece, but they won't fully prepare you for what lies inside, waiting to drag your imagination through a tumultuous hunt for the hidden monsters of the Aubyn family.
I'll admit that one of the things I was most skeptical about before reading Blood was the fact that each chapter is told from the first-person point of view of a different character. Most authors struggle to differentiate the voices of more than a few characters, so my hopes were not high that it could be done with an ensemble cast. Well, only a few chapters in, that skepticism was dashed. Ferguson's knowledge of the characters leads to a true understanding of them and an ability to bring out their darkest secrets and fears. Each character has a voice and point of view that is distinctly their own, and I never felt like I was in the head of anyone other than the character presented.
Another thing Ferguson does well is staying true to a hallmark of gothic horror that makes the setting a character, too. Hallow Manor, the home of the Aubyn family, has its own distinct presence throughout the novel. It is very much a living, breathing part of the main cast, and it does not fail to deliver on its promise of adding tension and strife to the plot. However, Ferguson doesn't stop with the house. The surrounding countryside and the secrets held within it become an integral part of the plot, and without them the story would not feel nearly as dark and foreboding as it does.
If you haven't bought a copy of Blood by this point in your reading of this post, stop and do it now. It is available in both print and eBook format on Amazon.com. You will not be disappointed. This will also give you the ability to get on board with E.P. Ferguson, whose works in progress are also going to be equally as enjoyable as Of Noble Blood.