Title: Highland Cove
Author: Dylan J Morgan
Category: Horror/Ghost Story
My Rating: 5 Star
Highland Cove Sanatorium sits abandoned on a desolate island one mile off the Scottish mainland. It’s a dark, foreboding place, filled with nightmares. Even darker are the asylum’s secrets: a history of disease and mental illness, macabre experiments and murder.
The tales of ghostly appearances are said to be more fact than fiction, but no one has ever documented the phenomenon. Codie Jackson aims to change all that. Arriving from London with his small independent film crew, they plan to make a documentary that will forever change their lives.
But when one of the crew disappears, things begin to spiral out of control. A storm closes in to ravage the island, and in the darkness Highland Cove’s true horrors are revealed. Now lost within the institution’s labyrinthine corridors, Codie and his team realize that their nightmare is only just beginning.
I’m a massive fan of this author and waited (im)patiently for the release of Highland Cove. It didn’t disappoint, and I devoured this in two sittings.
The book starts with a throwback to sixty years ago, setting the scene and introducing us to the reason for most of the horror that follows. We are then swept into the present day and introduced to our five main characters as they begin an expedition to film a documentary in a deserted asylum on a Scottish island.
Character development is vital to any novel as the ‘cast’ are the most significant part of any story. However, in Highland Cove, Morgan’s storm becomes a pivotal main character. You can almost taste the electricity crackling in each thunderclap and bolt of lightning, and feel the rain on your face. The descriptive prose adds another layer to the fear as it builds to the crescendo.
There’s a twist I didn’t see coming (no spoilers here) that raised the bar on the horror of this story. I physically squirmed in a few places, and I’m relatively sure I won’t sleep for a week!
As with all of Morgan’s novels, this would transfer beautifully to the big screen, and as I was reading, I could easily picture the terror and fear these characters were going through. You get caught up in the panic and terror of Highland Cove as Morgan weaves current day with occasional flashbacks into old inmates of the asylum.
When you’re nearly at the end of the novel, you dare to hope, but Morgan has a knack of blindsiding you with another twist or two leaving you with a book that stays with you for days, if not weeks after finishing.
I can’t recommend this enough.
I received an ARC copy of Highland Cove from the author in exchange for an honest review via Rosie Amber’s Book Review Team #RBRT
BUY your copy today HERE