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3.89  ·  Rating details ·  390 ratings  ·  95 reviews
In 1961, the small town of Haven thought they'd gotten rid of their monster.

After a series of child killings, Paul Greymore was caught carrying a wounded girl. His face, disfigured from a childhood accident, seemed to confirm he was the monster the community hoped to banish. With Paul in prison, the killings stopped.

For seventeen years, Haven was peaceful again. But Paul s
Hardcover, Limited Edition, 504 pages
Published October 31st 2016 by Cemetery Dance
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Average rating 3.89  · 
Rating details
 ·  390 ratings  ·  95 reviews

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3.5/5 stars!

Haven is a coming of age story, set in a small town in Massachusetts. Narrated beautifully by Matt Godfrey, and set in a such a perfect place, how could the story itself not be fabulous? Truth is though, it's just okay.

Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed it and as I said the narration was excellent. However, I didn't find that this book added anything original to the genre. 80's horror nostalgia is a big thing now and that may have soured my opinion a little. I recently saw the movie of
Sadie Hartmann Mother Horror
This book was probably my most anticipated read for my Season of Horror reading. I bought it a few months into summer so the excitement had a lot of time to grow. I found Tom Deady, the author, on Twitter-he posted his first novel had won the Bram Stoker award for First Novel! A big achievement in both horror and debut novels, in my opinion.
The blurb on the cover says,
"Haven is a big, generous, Stephen King-like small town boys vs. monster epic." and I also read somewhere that it was compared to
Sep 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a very good audio production. Matt Godfrey did a fantastic job with the narration. The characters, pacing, tone and cadence were all spot on.

The synopsis (which I did not read ahead of time) says “Haven is a compelling horror epic in the spirit of It or Summer of Night…” Damn, those are big shoes to fill. So here’s the deal. While it’s not IT or SoN, it is pretty darn good. A (sort of) coming of age tale and (definitely) a creature feature. The story itself is probably a 3 to 3.5 star
Frank Errington
Jan 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Review copy

After nearly seventeen years in Braxton State Prison, for a crime he didn't commit, Paul Greymore is a free man. Free to return to the lakeside town of Haven. Greymore may be free from the prison walls, but will he ever be free from his past? Not if Cody Crawford, the local Chief of Police has any say in the matter.,

At it's simplest, Haven is a wonderful coming of age story, filled with excellent characters I grew to love and hate over the course of the 500 pages that make up Tom Dead
joyce g
Apr 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
This was such an enjoyable read. A great cast of characters developed by author Tom Deady, some charming and endearing, some despicable.I wanted to take my time and savor this adventure but found myself drawn to opening the pages. A must read!
do you curses? do you like mad scientist? how about creatures gone wild? whatever it is you like this book has it! i know what your thinking. gee, that sounds like a mess! it really isn't. Tom pulls all that off so smoothly, you won't even miss a beat in the book. The story is really good, it was just a little bit too long. i loved most of the characters. they are flawed and not perfect by any means but they are human and easy to relate to. this is the first thing i've listened to by Tom Deady a ...more
Sep 19, 2017 marked it as to-read
This hardcover edition is numbered 28 of 600 copies printed and is signed by Tom Deady.
Nov 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Tom Deady’s HAVEN hits a note perfect tone of retro-cool horror evoking an early 80s sensibility without reading at all like an imitation. Like Stranger Things—though written before it aired—HAVEN conjures the aesthetic of the time both in content and style in a way that is spot on while being a modern story with an original voice. And while comparisons to Stephen King’s early work are apt, where others often try to copy King and fall flat, Deady knows when to play classic notes and when to take ...more
Reeda Booke
Really didn't think I would like this one as much as I did! Reminiscent of IT and A Boy's Life.
Definitely worth the read.
Stan James
Aug 30, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: reviewed
When I pick up a book by an author I'm not familiar with, I do it because the story interests me, or I heard something positive about it, or it was on sale.

What I don't do is familiarize myself with the author before reading, and so it was that I found out afterward that Haven is Tom Deady's first novel. It is also the 2017 Bram Stoker Award winner for First Novel.

There are things I enjoyed about the story, an old-fashioned horror novel about a monster lurking in the lake of a small town--and th
Mar 26, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
If I could rank it up here like I wanted it would be 3 1/2 stars. I found that it had a very promising beginning and overall I liked it enough, it just seemed to need a little more editing to tighten up the story more. I would've liked longer chapters delving deeper into character development and story instead of the very short 2 to 3 page chapters that switched perspectives so often.
Scott Kemper
Did you love Stranger Things? Do you love 80s creature features? Do you love Stephen King? If you answered, yes, yes, fuck yes I do, you'll probably like this book. I suggest reading it despite my score, which I will explain.

Tom Deady has been writing for a while and this is his first published novel. It won the Bram Stoker award for best first novel. I'm trying to read my way through the Bram Stoker and Shirley Jackson awards, so obviously I had to read this. I feel, I had my expectations set w
Jan 08, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019-a-z
I was about 60% through the book and prepared to give a 4-star rating for a story that was reminiscent of IT and Summer of Night. But as I continued to read, and started to feel the book was beginning to drag, it finally hit a wall for me, and I realized a number of issues I had with it.


1. While it was in the vein of the books I mentioned above, after awhile it felt like instead of emulating them, it was following a formula for these coming of age horror book
Apr 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tbr
I saw this book advertised and waited for it, watching until Amazon got it, then bought it
I was not disappointed. what a great book. the book, characters, action, the telling of it. All wonderful. I will be putting this book on my keeper shelf on my kindle, and be looking for more by this author. I'm heading for amazon now to see if he has anymore and buy those.
Do yourself a favor and read this book
The Scary Reviews
Dec 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2018
This was a fantastic book, I loved it from the beginning. It had a great group of characters, both protagonist and antagonists. The story telling was excellent and the town of Haven couldn't have felt more real if I'd been there myself. This was the kind of story that pulled me in, and left me missing Denny and his friends when the last page was read. I highly recommend this one. It was on my shelf far too long. I'm glad I finally got around to reading it.
Sep 14, 2017 rated it it was ok
Review to follow. I'm way behind in my group reading, so I will have to review it later. This one is just not for me.
Jim Lay
This is a serviceable horror novel with a fun, if not familiar, theme: A creature awakens from hibernation and begins preying on the residents of a small town. It's the kind of story that is right up my alley, normally.
But I don't feel like there was enough story in "Haven" to warrant 500 pages. It felt "stretched" to the point of being too thin in places, filled with slow-witted characters, and pacing that was too tedious for the ending to make it worthwhile. (i.e., When all the characters acce
Shane Keene
Jul 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is a damn good, must read story. When my full review goes up on Hellnotes/Horror World, I'll post an excerpt and links here, but by all means, don't wait for my babble. Read. This. Book.
Sep 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Excellent first novel by this author. Edge of your seat horror/suspense coming of age story with interesting characters, interwoven with compelling plot lines. A disfigured man, missing children, and something or someone lurking in the ruins of an old army installation at the edge of a lake. I highly recommend this gem from Cemetery Dance Publications.
Dec 02, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, horror
A solid pastiche of early Stephen King tropes, from kids fighting monsters all the way to memories of Red Sox games.
This is a perfect coming-of-age horror homage to the eighties novels I devoured in my youth, and therefore reading this book felt like a nostalgic trip back in time. 'Haven' follows the recipe to the dot (the boy and his dog, the bullies, the outsider, the idyllic small town stalked by a monstrous evil) which makes it almost too perfect - like the author didn't want to take any risk here. But that also leaves it missing some individuality, some unique twist of its own. At the end, the book left ...more
Linda Watkins
Oct 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Tom Deady's "Haven" is one great big page-turner of a novel! Reminiscent, to me, of early Stephen King (most notably "It" and "Salem's Lot"), Deady weaves a tale of small town New England beset by monsters, both of the human and inhuman sort.

The story starts when Paul Greymore is released from prison. Greymore, whose face is badly scarred from an accident when he was a child, was convicted seventeen years earlier of a string of brutal child murders. He maintains his innocence and is persuaded by
Nov 12, 2018 rated it it was ok
It's rare for me to give a review below three stars, but this book had so many problems, and such a wide variety of them, that I couldn't quite justify more than two. If I could give half-stars, I'd tack another one on.

I stumbled upon this book by looking up Bram Stoker Award winners. I wanted horror, specifically of the type where something regularly jumps out of the shadows and eats people. This book should've delivered. At its core, Haven's a nice little monster story set in nostalgia-drenche
Damian Mxyzptlk
May 25, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: horrific
It's a nice and easy read, but not without flaws, especially for a winner of Bram Stoker Award for First Novel - I probably set my expectations a little too high. Some of the plot twists and explanations weren't quite convincing and I thought characters could use some more in-depth exploration, but hey, it's not supposed to be a psychological horror. It was interesting to read, even if the emphasis is on action, mystery and plot, and the language is not as important - it's definitely not literar ...more
Brian Bennett
Jan 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Could not stop reading. The blurb on the front does so much disservice to the story; wonderfully flawed but decent characters - including the weather. I love a good story that makes the weather a formidable character (and it pulls that off very well).

Cyn Donnelly
Feb 04, 2017 added it
Shelves: 2017
Tom Deady has created characters you care about while weaving a dark, monstrous tale. I'm usually a fairly fast reader but purposely took this one slowly so I could be sure to take it all in. Enjoyed every minute of it!
Joshua Dodd
May 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Very good, some gripes but very well put together. I'll add a full review when life is less hectic. Thanks Nocturnal Readers Box, I wouldn't have read it other wise.
Mar 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My original Haven audiobook review and many others can be found at Audiobook Reviewer.

Paul Greymore has been convicted of brutally killing more than a dozen children in the quiet town of Haven.  Now 17 years later he is released from prison and the killings begin again.  The police chief is convinced it is Greymore and will go to whatever lengths necessary to stop him.  Greymore, friendless and disfigured, must prove his innocence while simultaneously protecting the victims.

Nothing is what it se
William Richardson
Sep 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It took me awhile to read , but it wasn't because it was slow reading, it was because I had a lot of things going at once.
This was one of those books that has you turning the pages and going from one chapter to the next
without caring what time it's getting to be or how much you want to close your eyes and go to sleep.
The characters are so real that you may feel you've met them at sometime in your life. I can see the lake as though it's somewhere I use to go. The story is very believable (we al
BriaKnits & Reads
Mar 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror, thriller, sci-fi, adult
I flew through the pages of this book so fast and I’m still shocked. I picked this up to take a little break from the YA binge fest that I had been having since being quarantined and I am so happy I did. I didn’t realize how badly I was looking forward to reading a horror thriller book until I started in on this.

It’s a slow paced book at first so don’t expect a lot going on. Sometimes it upsets me when writers take their sweet ass time to get to the point but in this case it made this story mor
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Horror Aficionados : August 2019 Group Read # 2 with Guest Author, Tom Deady 50 142 Sep 04, 2019 10:44PM  

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Tom Deady is the author of several short stories, as well as a non-fiction book on the Red Sox historic 2004 season.

Tom's debut novel, Haven, is available now from Cemetery Dance on Amazon in ebook and paperback (
Haven is the 2016 Bram Stoker Winner of Superior Achievement in a First Novel.

Tom's second novel, Eternal Darkness, is available now from Blood

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