C.V. Hunt's newest novelis both a step more into traditional horror and a continuation of her existential examination of the frequently perverse human naturethat I expect from this dark but always substantial writer. In <i>Home is Where the Horror is</i>, struggling photographer Evan Lansing has just separated from his cheating girlfriend. He makes an agreement with his brother to move into their deceased mother's isolated cottage and do some renovation work on it in exchange for rent. As soon as he arrived strange events start to happen including his new habit of sleep-walking and a sudden cutting of his skin. Then there are his neighbors, a man and his daughter who he suspects are having perverted and illegal interactions.
The first thing I realized about this novel by Hunt is that the main protectionist was actually close to likeable. it is not unusual for the main character in a Hunt novel to be not so nice and downright repulsive sometimes. This is not to say Evan doesn't have his faults and shortcomings. Those shortcomings and past experiences has much to sdo with where this story goes. But he is someone you actually root for. But the author makes up in the supporting cast with the two neighbor... and possibly a third? There is a clear darkness of mood developing over what is a fairly ordinary person and this is what makes this novel by C. V a little more conventional. You can see a distinct separation and eventual conflict of good and evil. There are still similarities to her past novels though. There are a lot of scenes of kink and perversion. It is shocking and meant to be shocking. Hunt writes some of the best sexual and body horror in the field although I hesitate to call it erotic. It's horror and it is definitely terrifying.
I always like a CV Hunt novel but this one really thrilled me because the of stronger horror elements standing on their own. I believe the horror fan who want his horror straight-up and scary will enjoy this providing he or she has a strong stomach for both gore and sexual kink. It also has a slower but steady built-up which culminate in pure terror for the last third of the novel. But that unrelenting darkness is still there and it is one of the thing that makes her worth reading, at least for this reader. It's a nice and ultimately essential horror read for the year.