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Review: Weeping Season by Seán O’Connor

weeping season by sean oconnor

Weeping Season

Seán O’Connor

A group of strangers wake up in a cold isolated forest with no memory of anything before their arrival. Lost, hungry and wandering aimlessly, they are summoned to a campsite by a remote entity who controls their fate through a series of tortuous objectives. Their only hope for survival is either escape from the psychological game reserve, known as Block 18, or face mortality at the hands of its maniacal moderator, who loves nothing more than watch his participants suffer…more.

My Rating:

Shutter Island meets The Belko Experiment in Weeping Season, the latest from Seán O’Connor.

Immediately immersive Weeping Season opens with a twisted and perplexing situation that immediately brings to mind the question, what the hell was going on? Details slowly come to light, along with a cast of characters, not many of which are likable, but all of which must work together to survive some sick, weird experiment. Facing their fears, each person is selected at (supposed) random to complete a task; otherwise, they will all go without food. Each situation is written with precise pacing and excellently vibrant detail, eliciting sneers of disgust, swallows of rising bile and claustrophobia.

To say the trials are engrossing is an understatement, it’s almost as if the reader can feel the cold, hear their own belly rumble, smell the surroundings of pine, dirt and…other things that aren’t satisfactory. O’Connor undertakes this vivid description with refined minimalism, delivering just what you need, none of what you don’t. All the while, we’re still wondering, what the hell is going on?! We are in the same boat as the protagonist. We are even in the same boat as the ‘contestants,’ all of them struggling to survive, to mix morals with survival, and not all is what it seems. The end scenes race by at a vicious, glorious pace to a meticulously planned finale. The book plays out like an intense movie, definitely primed and ready for a movie adaptation all horror fans would devour.

Weeping Season is nail biting, adrenaline pumping, twisted horror at its most darkly delicious apex.

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