Let me first say that I love Tom Deady’s work. His debut novel, Haven, which won a Bram Stoker, was one of the best books I read that year. This new novella ranks right up there, too.
Coleridge is the story of Dalia and Zadie, two women who meet at an open house. The property featured, a hundred-year-old home, is terribly rundown and both of the women have an eye toward restoring it. They hit it off, become business partners, and buy the place. During the restoration, they discover they are more than just friends and embark on a relationship full of love and hope. All goes well for years as they continue bringing the house back to its former splendor. However, tragedy ensues when Zadie dies, leaving a grieving Dalia behind.
Enter Mr. Slade who seeks out Dalia. He tells her he’s Zadie’s father and gives her his card. That evening, curious, Dalia calls him. Big mistake!
At this point, the story turns dark and sinister as Mr. Slade invades Dalia’s home searching for a relic he believes can grant immortality.
Coleridge is not only a dark and haunting tale, but also a tender and well-crafted love story. The novella is beautifully written and, once started, hard to put down. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and was left wanting more. Author Deady leaves the tale a bit open-ended and I hope he has a sequel in mind. Highly recommended for fans of horror, suspense, the occult and haunting reads. Five big shiny stars!