Ronald Malfi’s Floating Staircase takes what is a fairly commonplace horror novel plot—the successful horror writer finds himself in a supernatural situation—and turns it into some complex and multilayered, with both true emotion and true suspense. It’s an unforgettable read!
Travis Glasgow has moved back to the United States from London with his wife, Jodie; they’ve bought a deal of a house next to his older brother, Adam. Travis and Adam’s younger brother, Kyle, drowned when Travis was thirteen—though exactly how is unclear at the start, it is clear how deeply Travis blames and hates himself for it.
Despite Travis’s deep pain, he has still managed to have a healthy marriage and a successful career as an author—until he finds out that a young boy who used to live in his new house drowned under suspicious circumstances. When Travis finds a secret room in the basement, sealed off from the world and filled with a child’s toys and clothing, he becomes obsessed with finding out more about the boy and how he died—especially after a series of oddly supernatural, chilling events. His wife and family think he’s losing his mind, but still Travis is driven fiercely forward to solve the mystery—and perhaps lay to rest some of his own long-held guilt and suffering.
“Floating Staircase” (the title refers to an unmoored dock floating in the lake behind Travis’ house) was a fabulous read—eerie scenes filled with suspense alternated nicely with scenes of convincing emotion, making me care about not only the mystery that drives Travis but also his own well-being and that of his family and wife. The book is very well written, evoking a great sense of mood and developing convincing, realistic characters, some of who are not as they seem. A suspenseful page-turner! Get more can’t-miss horror book deals when you subscribe to my mailing list here!