‘Cold Spell: The Halloween Curse Of Winterhill’ Is The Perfect Way To Start The Season

September 24, 2021

Written by Greg Kershaw

Plot
The idea of a witch cursing a town and then coming back to fulfill that curse is a plot that has a special place in horror. Personally, I love when people resurrect plots that we know and love and put their own spin on it. In the middle school-aimed Cold Spell: The Halloween Curse of Winterhill, Jeff C. Carter shows his unique ability to take something we all know and love and make it feel new, fun and scary! In this plot, Carter introduces the witch, but then spends most o the novel focusing on the characters, making us get to know them, become friends with them, and care about what happens to them…then the carpet gets pulled away from underneath everything.
Halloween stories (like Christmas movies) create the world of Halloween we all wish existed in our celebrations. A world where every house is adorned with jack-o-lanters, where every neighbor hands out full sized chocolate bars, and where people young and old are excited about the holiday. In Cold Spell there is a feeling of a true love of Halloween, a love strong enough to ward off evil. The plot is fun, scary, exciting and will put you deep into the Halloween spirit.

Characters
Eddie, Jim, Bryan and David are the group of friends we all wish we had as kids. They are all different from each other, but all bound together as life long friends in a small town. Carter has done a great job of not only making each friend their own individual, but getting into his memories of being a young boy and really creating believable, relatable people.
The witch of Winterhill is a very visual and tangible villain. She is pure darkness and evil. The minions she controls, the way she moves and how she looks all feed into the nightmare of Halloween legends.
Jeff C. Carter creates characters like he does narrative: he makes them feel real, tangible, and cared about.
Writing
Jeff C. Carter is a storyteller. He has the ability, with his writing, to tell a story that grabs the audience from beginning to end. His writing is supremely entertaining and paints vivid pictures of everything that happens without being too focused on describing each little individual thing. Carter is gifted at creating the world and the atmosphere that he needs for his stories, but more than that, he knows exactly how to bring his audience wholly into that world.

Critique
This book is really fantastic. I only wish there were more of it. I think that there is space for more from the witch, more of her magic and her manipulation. I really enjoyed her character and she was doing things that were touched on that I was hoping would be explored a bit more. I also felt that the ending came a bit suddenly. There was great build up to the end and the climax was very exciting, but I definitely would have enjoyed more. That’s not a bad thing, to leave your audience wanting more, so I can’t complain about it, but I also wouldn’t complain about some more depth into certain aspects of the plot.
Eulogy
Cold Spell: The Halloween Curse of Winterhill is the perfect way to get into the Halloween spirit. It is entertaining, exciting, scary, and overall a really great read! Last year, Jeff C. Carter treated us with We Bleed Orange and Black and this year it is Cold Spell, let’s hope that this tradition of a new Carter Halloween book every Halloween continues!

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