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The Mill (a novelette) [Kindle Edition]

Mark West
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £3.75
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Book Description

“West's writing manages to be both upliftingly happy and in the same moment breathtakingly sad.” — The Eloquent Page

“...this one grabs your heart-strings and twists them like a knife.” — Matthew Fryer’s Hellforge

Michael struggles to come to terms with the death of his wife. He has visions of her calling to him, inviting him to the beyond.

At the Bereaved Partners’ Group, he learns that he is not the only one left behind who can hear the departed beckon them… to the Mill.

This Greyhart Press eBook is a novelette: longer than a short story but brief enough to read in one sitting. At 16,000 words, The Mill would be about 64 pages in paperback.

'The Mill' was previously published by Pendragon Press as part of the anthology 'We Fade to Grey', edited by Gary McMahon. This Greyhart Press eBook edition has been revised but remains substantially the same. Paperbacks, and signed limited-edition hardbacks, of 'We Fade to Grey' may still be available.


“...amongst the very best in the ghost story tradition.” — This is Horror

“...unlike anything I have read up to now.” — The Horrifically Horrifying Horror Blog (5 stars)

“ writing...” — The Horror Fiction Review

“I had to take breaks for fear my heart would shatter.” — Book Den

“Highly recommended...” — The Horrifically Horrifying Horror Blog

“...a captivating read.” — The Eloquent Page

“The emotional content genuinely is moving and is never mawkish or sentimental...” — Dark Musings

“Sometimes the best horror fiction is hard to read.” — The Ginger Nuts of Horror

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Product Description

About the Author

Mark West was born in 1969 and lives in Northamptonshire, England with his wife, Alison and their young son Matthew. Writing since the age of eight, he discovered the small press in 1998 and since then has had almost sixty short stories published in various magazines around the world. His first collection, Strange Tales, was published by Rainfall Books in 2003 and they also published his short novel, Conjure, in 2009. His debut novel, In The Rain With The Dead, appeared from Pendragon Press in 2005 and following this — and the birth of his son — he spent two years wrestling with writer’s block. This was broken when his story The Mill, which Mark Morris called ‘one of the most moving pieces of writing I have read in a long time’, appeared in the acclaimed five-author collection We Fade To Grey, edited by Gary McMahon.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 211 KB
  • Print Length: 80 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1471648745
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Greyhart Press (27 Sept. 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005QBY84M
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #343,990 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Dad, husband, son, brother - I write fiction, I read, I watch films and I'm a crack shot with a Nerf gun.

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Customer Reviews

3 star
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4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly Recommend 27 Mar. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
I was hooked from the first page...... This short story hits the ground running - I couldn't put it down and didn't until I had finished it. My mistake was reading it in the middle of the night....creepy. A very human story of loss and loneliness told with a supernatural element. A very atmospheric, good old fashioned ghost story with an ending I wasn't expecting.

*I received a copy free in exchange for an honest review and I have no hesitation in highly recommending this if you enjoy a good haunting.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Horror Of Grief 24 Mar. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a great novella from Mark West - ostensibly a horror story, it is as much about the dislocation of the death of a loved one, and the resulting grief, as it is about the supernatural. Although the supernatural element is there and the book is genuinely creepy in places.

West writes about his character's feelings really well - at times this was a heart-wrenching read. It is paced really well, with no extra fat on the meat of the story, making its bleak story feel even more dark and unremitting. The ending really works well to bring both the realistic and supernatural elements together into a climax that is pitch-perfect, and haunting in more than one sense.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lost Souls 6 Feb. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
This is a wonderful, bleak, scary and ultimately devastating novelette. Mark West is a very good writer indeed, and he succeeds in getting under your skin, making you feel deeply for his characters. Here we follow Michael, left lost, damaged and alone after the death of his wife, Nicola. In his grief he latches on to another lost soul, Saskia, and together they try to come to terms with their loss, whilst simultaneously trying to unlock the mystery of their recurring dreams of an old, ruined mill.

Mark West writes with great sensitivity, and the very real horror of Micheal's life is both terrible and poignant, and convincingly portrayed. This is the real thing, like the story's been ripped weeping and bleeding from the writer's heart. At times it reads like an old fashioned ghost story: the horror quiet and restrained, creepy and insidious:

"Something reflected in the water and caught his eye. He looked down and saw himself and the head of a person who appeared to be standing to his right. It was there and then suddenly gone. The shock of seeing it seemed to fill his head with pins and needles and he fought for a moment to catch his breath. Instinctively, he looked around but he was alone on the wall.
This was too much. "Who's there?" he called, looking along the tree line, hoping to catch a glimpse of the person in white again. "Who is it?""

If you like your horror fiction intelligent, gripping and genuinely unsettling, then a visit to Mark West's 'The Mill' is for you. If, however, you're of a fragile and nervous disposition, then stay well, well away...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Captivating Read 12 Nov. 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
Over the last twelve months I have rekindled my interested in reading short stories. I've been lucky enough to read some marvelous anthologies and some fantastic stand-alone work. I was first exposed to Mark's writing when a read the anthology Ill at Ease. I thoroughly enjoyed his entry Come See My House In The Pretty Town. I recently got the opportunity to read another one of his short stories, The Mill.

It has always struck me that sadness and grief can be incredibly difficult emotions to convey in writing. When it is successful, however, it can produce work that is not only incredibly effective but also deeply moving. Personally I have only come across writing like this a few times in the past, I think I am going to have to include Mark West on this very short list. The reader gets glimpses of the emotional turmoil that surrounds Michael at every turn. With the death of his wife he has been set adrift in his life and he is unsure how to move on.

As Michael's fragile emotional state continues to unravel he is drawn to a derelict building on the outskirts of town. Does the Mill act as a doorway to his lost love or is he losing his mind?

The story's conclusion ends on a bittersweet note that perfectly captures the overall tone of the piece. I was impressed that West's writing manages to be both upliftingly happy and in the same moment breathtakingly sad.

The Mill is a short, poignant exploration of a man dealing with the devastating loss of his partner. The supernatural elements are subtly blended into the story, and never feel forced. West treats what could be difficult subject matter with a delicate, reverential touch and it shows. Subtle and affecting, this is a captivating read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Mill - Mark West 25 Sept. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
I am not a reader of the horror genre. Not because I don't like it, but simply because I never really choose to read it - there's always books on my 'To Be Read' pile to get on with.

So when I was recommended this story, I thought it would be a nice way to ease myself into the genre. I didn't bank on becoming totally immersed in the story and not being able to put it down!

I read the opening chapter one evening when I had a spare few minutes, vowing to sit down properly the next day when I had more time - but I couldn't wait to read a quick snippet so I did just that. When I sat down the following day, I didn't close the story again until I was finished. It wasn't out of choice, my brain just wouldn't let me.

Mark has a wonderful way with words and manages to draw the reader in and not let them go again. The Mill is not just a horror story, but a story that deals with the very harrowing emotion that is grief. He writes with expertise and precision and captures the feeling and emotion of the story incredibly well.

A fantastic story with very real characters - a definite recommendation from me.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars More of The Mill, please...
Creating a story that not only chills you, but grabs at your heartstrings, is a real challenge. Mark West has done just that in this tale of loss and separation - and in not... Read more
Published 9 months ago by CDH
5.0 out of 5 stars Chilling and emotional
I bought this e-book last year and have just returned to give it a second reading. It must be the weather or the time of year, but I fancied reading a slice of horror. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Mrs. Sarah Crabtree
5.0 out of 5 stars Hooked, worried and crying
A horror with a heart. This story is as much about grief as it is a tale of horror. You don't know how much is the protagonist's mind playing tricks because of his heartbreaking... Read more
Published on 12 July 2013 by G. Shutt
4.0 out of 5 stars Breif Grief
This is a short book concering a grieving widower failing to come to terms with his loss. The small town autuminal setting is the perfect backdrop for the story which packs a... Read more
Published on 4 July 2013 by Paul Melhuish
5.0 out of 5 stars Chilling and moving.
Michael is a young widower who communicates with the memory of his late wife in his recurring dreams. Read more
Published on 20 Nov. 2012 by Paul D Brazill
4.0 out of 5 stars Creepy!
I felt so sad for the MC Michael, it was truly heartbreaking to read his story and then just as i let my guard down Mark sprung at me with his arms wide open and fgull of creepy... Read more
Published on 6 Nov. 2012 by Claire C Riley
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Emotional Supernatural Tale
Sometimes the best horror fiction is hard to read. And by hard to read I don't mean because of the writing style and language used. Read more
Published on 31 Dec. 2011 by Ginger Nuts of Horror
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