“Walkers” is the second novella that, together with “the Ritual”, make up the rather long book “OMNIBUS”.
My short GoodReads updates follow:
page 102: I have to say, it feels exactly like the "Ritual". So much that even if I hadn’t known who had written this novella, Masterton would have been my first guess. Anyway, still, vocalised sounds, stupid behaviours, great atmosphere, chilling deaths. We’ll see.
page 344: Book finished. I have to say that although the general feeling of the "Walkers" is identical to that of the "Ritual", and although I feared that the ending would be of the same nature, I was pleasantly surprised. All in all, the story is solid, the father-son relation is the spine of the novel and the ending is smooth and welcome. I might have enjoyed this more than the first story of the book (the Ritual)
Rate and Review:
I will give this a rating of 3.5 out of 5.
The general feeling that this story left me is better than the one I got from “the Ritual”. There are still some moments, however, that I felt like the story was weak, the descriptions were over the top, the constant representation of sounds in the form of “shhhhhhhhhh-shhhhhhhhhh” got tiring, and so on.
Still, it feels like there is an actual structure, there are more characters to feel for (the absence of characters and the absolute focus on the father-son duo got a tad irritating in “the Ritual”), there is magic, ancient languages, medical facts, trivia, etc. that keep the story flowing.
Again, one needs to remember that this is a story of more than 20 years. Still, the building atmosphere is so alive that, you too, might find yourself double checking the walls and floors of your houses, in the dark.
“UPDATE | Complete OMNIBUS review on GoodReads”
This book is a collection of two novellas by Graham Masterton: 1. Ritual 2. Walkers
While reading this book, the reader will need to keep in mind a couple of things. First off, both novellas were written in the 80s. The first one was actually written in the early years of the decade, which the second one has a copyright year of 1989. The second thing that one needs to keep in mind is that Masterton has a very personal way of conveying sounds through his words. Although it gets tiring fast, one needs to put up with constant uses of "whooooosh" and "shhhhhh-shhhhhhhhhhh" and "clicky-drip-clicky-plop".
Keeping these in mind, and putting up with the occasional horrendous (if, non-existent) editing, the reader will enjoy a thrill ride.
Masterton, with all his shortcomings, delivers descriptions that will make your stomach growl and your eyelids shut involuntarily. You might even find yourself recoiling or turning your head away from the page, to give yourself a moment to digest what you just read; or, to avoid getting sick.
The basic element that keeps the stories together is the relationship between father and son. In both cases, the background is a dysfunctional family, a secluded area, a deep dark secret and an ominous threat. In both cases, the descriptions will test your stamina. At some points, they were indeed excessive, to the point of making me avert my eyes.
It will certainly not have the same effect to all people. And some might think that I’m just a weak character. The truth is that for some reason, there were moments in Masterton’s writing where I thought that he had identified my one and only phobia and played with it as if it were a string on a Stradivarius violin.
I think everyone with a wish for a scare will enjoy both stories in this book. There are moments that you will feel like you’re wasting time, yes, but, in the end, the aftertaste will vastly be positive.