Ginger Nuts of Horror
The Bear Who Wouldn't Leave is J.H. Moncrieff's debut novella published by Samhain Horror in May, 2015. In this book, Josh is a 10-year old boy still trying to accept his father’s death. It’s been a couple of years since his dad died and Josh and his mom have made a decent life for themselves. Eventually, Josh's mom gets remarried to a man named Michael, a man we learn early on is not a nice guy. In what we think is an effort to get Josh to like him, Michael gives Josh a creepy looking teddy bear named Edgar, and it quickly becomes apparent that Edgar is not your average bear. Josh wants nothing to do with the bear and immediately hides Edgar in his closet. Unfortunately for Josh, Edgar doesn't like it in the dark closet and the more Josh tries getting rid of the bear, the angrier Edgar becomes.
Anyone who has kids or spends any time around kids knows most have overactive imaginations, and at first, we don't know if Edgar is truly evil or if Josh's fragile mind is playing tricks on him. Imagine getting a bear that wears a perpetual evil smirk on his face, and no matter where you place him, he always seems to end up right back on your bed. I don't know about you, but I'd be a little freaked out.
Josh enlists the help of a friend when he realizes he's in over his head with the bear. Things continue getting worse and eventually, young Josh is in a fight for his life.
The Bear Who Wouldn't Leave is well-written, entertaining, and doesn’t rely on a lot of foul language and gore to get its point across. Moncrieff does an excellent job of building the tension and you really begin to feel every emotion Josh feels. This story is equal parts scary, suspenseful and heartbreaking, making it a well-rounded read, despite being only 84-pages long.
This is the perfect story for those who like their horror a little more tame, and it’s short so it can be read in an hour or two. I think J.H. Moncrieff has a lot to offer the world of horror and I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next. This is the second of her stories I have had the pleasure of reading and it left me wanting more.
You can check out the creepy trailer for The Bear Who Wouldn't Leave here, and if you like this book, you'll love the rest of Samhain's Childhood Fears collection.
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