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30 review for The Ties That Bind

  1. 5 out of 5

    Peter

    Paul and Jo Anne, newly wed, try to start a new life in Charleston. But the past doesn't let Paul go. His father committed suicide and starts coming back as a ghost every night. Jo Anne gives birth to a stillborn. What is going on here? What does Paul's mother know? What is Paul planning to do after his wife went with her mother to Spartanburg? This is an absolutely brilliant Southern gothic novel full of suspense and eerie moments. The author develops his characters in a fine way and builds up Paul and Jo Anne, newly wed, try to start a new life in Charleston. But the past doesn't let Paul go. His father committed suicide and starts coming back as a ghost every night. Jo Anne gives birth to a stillborn. What is going on here? What does Paul's mother know? What is Paul planning to do after his wife went with her mother to Spartanburg? This is an absolutely brilliant Southern gothic novel full of suspense and eerie moments. The author develops his characters in a fine way and builds up a very compelling setting with supernatural and mysterious elements. I want to know what's going on here and immediately turn to the second book of this trilogy. Great read and absolutely recommended!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Nathalia

    First of all, I'm not a native English speaker (I was born in Argentina), and even if I can read the language perfectly fine, my grammar is a bit off. Now, about the book. This story is neither amazingly good or amazingly bad. In other words, it's not a waste of time but I wouldn't recommend it. I'm still not sure how to classify the book. It's not horror, but it's darker than just suspense. It could be paranormal, but there're not enough explanations about what's going on in the story. As most boo First of all, I'm not a native English speaker (I was born in Argentina), and even if I can read the language perfectly fine, my grammar is a bit off. Now, about the book. This story is neither amazingly good or amazingly bad. In other words, it's not a waste of time but I wouldn't recommend it. I'm still not sure how to classify the book. It's not horror, but it's darker than just suspense. It could be paranormal, but there're not enough explanations about what's going on in the story. As most books, The Ties that Bind has both good and bad things. Let's start with the details I liked the most. -The cover is really pretty and eye catching. -The first chapter is amazing because it gives you a flashback that is the origin of everything that will happen after. -The overall story is interesting and some events were really unexpected. -After chapter 30 or so, I just couldn't stop reading. -I love when paranormal books get a little of criminal elements (police, disappearances, etc) What I don't like -It is a saga. Come on, this type of story should be done in one book. Maybe in a longer book, but in just one. -The begging is SUPER slow and confusing. -Since it's a saga, NOTHING is really explained. So, even if the story is good, I have no idea WHY did everything happen. -The jumps in time. Suddenly a lot of time passes, then it slows down, then there's a scene that comes out of nowhere. I feel as if it's missing text between chapters, as if it was finished in a rush. Incomplete. -I didn't like (grammarly talking) that most paragraphs start with either "Paul" or "JoAnna" (main characters names). Again and again... sometimes even 7 paragraphs in a row starting with the same name. Too repetitive. -Too many characters that don't really matter and barely appear. -Too many things untold. I KNOW, it is a saga, but still. At the end, I feel like the readers should finish the book with a bit more information. I want to thank the author for sending me the copy (won it here in a giveaway) and I hope this review becomes useful in the future. As an editor and a fellow writer, I always try to pay attention to the details and even though this book presents a really good general idea (plot-wise), I tried to mention what could've made it a lot better. After all, that´s how us, writers, grow, learning from what readers think about our books.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Leslie Wiederspan

    Decent story, but the spelling errors were annoying. "He" instead of "her", or "he" instead of "him". Little things like that. and the occasional sentence that made no sense. Other than that, it was a good, if not sad, story. With bits of horror, of course. It was interesting enough that I want to read the rest of the series. Decent story, but the spelling errors were annoying. "He" instead of "her", or "he" instead of "him". Little things like that. and the occasional sentence that made no sense. Other than that, it was a good, if not sad, story. With bits of horror, of course. It was interesting enough that I want to read the rest of the series.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    This was one creepy ride. I was given the opportunity to read an updated copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. I really liked the description provided by another reviewer that it's kind of a slow burn suspense. I enjoy that. The writing is such that I can see all of it play out in my head like a movie - especially the creepy parts. You're lying in bed, you know you turned that light off... you get up, take along your baseball bat just in case, go creeping down the h This was one creepy ride. I was given the opportunity to read an updated copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. I really liked the description provided by another reviewer that it's kind of a slow burn suspense. I enjoy that. The writing is such that I can see all of it play out in my head like a movie - especially the creepy parts. You're lying in bed, you know you turned that light off... you get up, take along your baseball bat just in case, go creeping down the hall, scare the daylights out of yourself, only to find... nothing. You turn the light off, shut the door for good measure, and go back to bed. Then you hear noises... taking your bat in hand again, you head down the hall, momentarily distracted by the fact that the door is open, and the light is on... again. The shivery suspense factor is definitely there. The book covers a substantial period of time, from the day of the couple's wedding through a move to Charleston, SC, through several months of on-going encounters with the supernatural, but does so in such a way that the events are kind of like snapshots in time. One chapter might cover what happened on the way to their honeymoon, then the next you understand that they are in their new apartment some time later, then another chapter has them beginning work at new jobs and in a new house. But it's not choppy in any way, I think it succinctly portrays the progression of the story without bogging the reader down with the day-in-day-out of the character's lives. However, enough of the day-to-day is left in the chapters that the characters are very real. We see them at work, eating out, shopping, but the mundane events are such that they tie in to the overall story. (For example, one day they are eating at a cafe, doing a little window-shopping, and it's the words spoken by a shop clerk that seemed innocent at the time, but are significant in the long-run) This is the second book by Dale Young that I have read, and he has a unique ability to write real every-day people - especially in the South. I noticed phrases and word-order that I use myself that are typical of this region of the country. He doesn't try to undo real life by making his characters speak a certain correct way. Often authors who write Southern fiction have a tendency to make it sound very "Well butter my biscuit!" stereotypical, but this writing is just real. I especially like the character of Dan, Paul's work friend, who is obsessed with food, and always tries to say the right thing, usually sticking his foot in his mouth in the process, but he's quick to smooth things over. It feels like there is an old-school Stephen King influence to Young's writing. It has many of the hallmarks of classic horror - the slow spiral into madness, the ties between seduction and evil, and the changing of appearances (one minute you think you see something one way, the next it's crawling with maggots and decay). I always include a content portion in my reviews, just because as a reader, I always want to know what I'm getting into. For anyone with content concerns, profanity is minimal, there are some sex scenes, and the story deals extensively with suicide, and childhood trauma. I don't want to spoil anything about the plot, but feel free to ask if there are any additional concerns. And finally, the book has a killer ending. It could be a stand-alone novel with an eerie classic-horror ending, so it does feel complete, but it is part of a trilogy, and I will definitely be reading the rest.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Joseph

    Disclaimer: I won this book in a giveaway. Summary: A fairly short, creepy read. Would recommend. Actual review: Newly-weds Paul and Joanna move to a new town with new jobs, future looking bright. Of course since this is a horror novel, things don't end well. This book is definitely more of a slow-burner, with most of the scares taking the form of Paul's nightmares. The late-beginning to early-middle sections, which mostly focus on their happy marriage and new jobs, are particularly slow and drag o Disclaimer: I won this book in a giveaway. Summary: A fairly short, creepy read. Would recommend. Actual review: Newly-weds Paul and Joanna move to a new town with new jobs, future looking bright. Of course since this is a horror novel, things don't end well. This book is definitely more of a slow-burner, with most of the scares taking the form of Paul's nightmares. The late-beginning to early-middle sections, which mostly focus on their happy marriage and new jobs, are particularly slow and drag on but the last chunk of the book is pretty gripping. Since it's the first in a trilogy, not much at all is explained and the ending sets up things for the next book rather than give resolution. Despite that, what story that has been teased seems really interesting and I'll definitely check out the next books to see what happens next. Some of the characters are one-dimensional, like Joanna's mother and Chet Morton Dan, but there are two more books in the series so hopefully they'll get more spotlight. Some of the characters, like Dr. Cross, were almost completely inconsequential and there were some that I really wish had more scenes, like Isabella and Paul's mother. Hands down, the best parts of the book are Paul's nightmares and the scenes with Paul's father. His dreams have this menacing, surreal quality. Some are just straight terrifying while others capture this creepy, surreal vibe and feel like actual nightmares. Paul's father makes an awesome horror antagonist. A decaying, stalker corpse with a shotgun? Hell yes! In conclusion, this is a pretty good book. There were a lot of things I liked about it and some things I didn't. Hopefully the series only gets better from here.

  6. 5 out of 5

    jane e. edwards

  7. 5 out of 5

    Teresa Hays

  8. 5 out of 5

    Brenda

  9. 4 out of 5

    Kari Beasley

  10. 4 out of 5

    Judy L Scott

  11. 5 out of 5

    Candy Rhodes

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jason L. Yanosik

  13. 5 out of 5

    Patricia Davis

  14. 5 out of 5

    Deb

  15. 4 out of 5

    lauri mak

  16. 4 out of 5

    Jody Warnke

  17. 4 out of 5

    Amy D. Jenkins

  18. 4 out of 5

    Karrie

  19. 5 out of 5

    Janina s. Asselin

  20. 5 out of 5

    Krystol

  21. 5 out of 5

    Marie Neve

  22. 5 out of 5

    Velina Welch

  23. 5 out of 5

    Brenda

  24. 5 out of 5

    Marjorie

  25. 5 out of 5

    annabella montoya

  26. 5 out of 5

    Elicia

  27. 5 out of 5

    Rob

  28. 5 out of 5

    Debbie Hayden williams

  29. 5 out of 5

    Orion

  30. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Young

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