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The Basement by Chad P. Brown - A book review

Updated on September 12, 2014

The Basement is a short story by Chad P. Brown. It's a horror story primarily set in a haunted house, specifically within a basement.

The Author

Chad P. Brown was born in West Virginia, US and loves most things horror.
He attended Marshall University, where he gained a Master's in Latin. He is also a member of the Horror Writer's Association. His first horror book, The Jack In The Box, was released in 2011.

The Story

The story follows a young girl called Heather. She is dared to enter a haunted house and into the basement.
There her past catches up with her. She experiences a chillingly terrible horror. Heather's deceased mother turns up, apparently as a ghost but her form reads more like a demon. Heather is shaken and terrified by the events that unfold at meeting her dead mother again. A terrible fate awaits Heather at the end.

The Review

Unfortunately, I couldn't help but notice how incredibly cliched The Basement is.
A teen gets dared to enter a haunted house, sees something terrible and has a terrible fate at the end. We have read and seen this a million, if not more, times in books and film.

The apparition that greets Heather is apparently supposed to be the ghost of her deceased mother. But the way the book reads makes her sound more like a demon, which is hugely different from a ghost. There is also no real reason for Heather's mother to suddenly haunt her and push Heather to her fateful ending, unless she always was incredibly psychotic towards her own children.

There was no personal connection to the main character, Heather. The reader is just expected to go with the flow, without knowing anything about Heather. Being able to connect with the main character is important in literature, particularly in horror genres. If the reader does not feel attached to the character in a horror, then they won't experience the same chills that the character does.

However, Chad's writing style is to be commended. The writing was deep and informative. He was very descriptive of the surroundings, environment and the apparition. Though the descriptions and pace of suspense were very good, the author also threw in a few "big words" that didn't really contribute anything to the story other than try to make himself look smart. Books are aimed at the readers, not the author. An author is supposed to use words that a general reading population will follow, not themselves.
The author seems to be trying too hard to follow the footsteps of Stephen King rather than being himself, some of the descriptions and wordings were far too similar to those used by King. Nobody can be Stephen King, except Stephen himself. Idolise King, be inspired by King, but don't try and be him.

The book could have gone in so many different directions and had so many improvements or different plots, which would have definitely made the story much better.

It's a shame that the author's writing talent was used to produce a cliched short story that we have already heard many times before. I am sure the author's other works would be much better than The Basement.

My Rating

I award The Basement by Chad P. Brown two squids out of five.

Pile of Bones: 13 Tales of Terror (click image for more info)
Pile of Bones: 13 Tales of Terror (click image for more info)

Another notable book from this author

Why not try out Chad P. Brown's book, Pile of Bones: 13 Tales of Terror.

This book contains thirteen short horror stories by Chad P. Brown, including The Basement. For thirteen stories, it's also at a bargain price. Experience Chad's writing style to his full extent, rather than limiting your collection to The Basement.

Have Your Say!

Have you read The Basement by Chad P. Brown? If not, will you consider it?
How about Pile Of Bones: 13 Tales Of Terror?

Do you agree or disagree with this review?


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    • John Dyhouse profile image

      John Dyhouse 

      4 years ago from UK

      Well you put across a great case for the writer, however One of the issues with ghost stories for me is the fact that they are cliched. I have so many books on my must-read-list that I doubt that I will be rushihng to read this one. Thanks for your honesty


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