is a very original story about a curse and its consequences for future generations. Having read previous work by Arthur Crandon I didn’t need to think twice whether to download the Amazon recommendation.
Set in the Philippines during and after the Spanish colonial occupation the book combines historical value with mythology and a bit of horror.
Based on a very persistent actual myth around a shopping mall in Manila the story starts with the arrival of Spanish conquistadors in Manila and their suppression of the local/ native inhabitants. A revenge action and murder lead to a curse and the birth of the Snake Twin.
Crandon has given the myth a wonderful literary life by connecting the origin of the monster with the tales of the after effects which allegedly are still present at said shopping mall.
All background, susperstition and cult status of the myth aside, the story itself is told with gripping suspense and a great injection of human drama into the horror. The characters chosen for the stories – in the past and in the present – are more than mere placeholders, they are quickly established as focal points and bring a strong personal component to the frightening plot.
The concept of the snake twin is an original and fascinating idea and a grateful subject for a horror story. Knowing that the legend lives on in people’s mind should draw extra attention to this well written novel but fans of Stephen King and other great horror writers might want to take notice of this accomplished story.
Short but highly compulsive this is an afternoon’s entertainment, gripping and very enjoyable.