The Nightmare Room
Chris Sorensen
Harmful Monkey Press
January 23, 2018
Reviewed by Brian James Lewis

Let me just kick things off right and say that The Nightmare Room by Chris Sorensen is one hell of a fine book! You might even want to just go ahead and purchase it right now. Okay, while that would make for probably the shortest review I’ve ever written, it’s definitely not helpful. So allow me to go into greater depth.

Chris Sorensen is an award-winning audiobook narrator who’s decided to switch story telling modes. Sometimes when people try this kind of thing, it goes over like a marathon runner going for the World’s Strongest Man title. But Sorensen is definitely on the right track with the first book of The Messy Man Series. This is some great writing full of characters that readers will get attached to fast and become deeply invested in the story. We start caring about Peter Larson and his wife, Hannah, as they roll into Maple City.

They’ve got what’s left of their world crammed into a U-Haul truck and with any luck at all, they can make a fresh start. Life has not been kind to them. Between their recent loss and the fact that Peter’s parents are living (make that existing) in a rest home of questionable value, things aren’t real great. Throw in the dilapidated farmhouse that Peter and Hannah are renting from his parents’ representatives for a dollar a month and things are more slap happy than a game of Whack-a mole!

And that’s not all. See, the house comes with extras. Not a sauna and a whirlpool spa either. No, this is powerful stuff that is angry and Peter seems to trigger it every time he’s on site. Things keep building until a specialist is called in. Things continue to mount, with plenty of interesting side material until we reach the ending of this book of The Messy Man Series. It’s not a total ending, because the game plan is for us to keenly await book number two. You’ll need to keep your eyes open at the ending because it is full of twists and turns. The one clue that I’ll give you is that it is definitely not even close to what I expected and that’s good.

I found it interesting that Sorensen is writing a story about a person who also records audiobooks for a living. Definitely a “write what you know” plan which brings about original results. This is the first book I have read with a protagonist who holds that job. I think it’s also one of the keys that makes this book so believable. It is a different type of reading, but Peter does what Chris does for a living, so he knows the weird hours, the required isolation booth. Those are nice details we can really sink out teeth into.

So is it worth your money and time? Is The Nightmare Room a killer read? Damn straight it is! Didn’t you read the beginning of this review? I’m not always fond of series type books, but I really enjoyed book number one of The Messy Man Series! Five Stars! Can’t wait until book number two. Grab a copy of this awesome book today!

About Brian J. Lewis

Brian James Lewis is a published poet and writer who enjoys reviewing speculative fiction and dark poetry. With all the great emerging writers, magazines, and presses, it is exciting to be part of this growing community! Word of mouth and keyboard is more important than it’s ever been, because readers want to know about books before they buy. It makes Brian feel great to see writers he’s reviewed become successful and their work go on to win awards! Whatever happens, he’s always glad to offer encouragement and increase visibility of writers who trust him with their work. You can catch up with Brian on Twitter @skullsnflames76 or on his WordPress blog