Review: Small Things by Joe DeRouen – Perfect Horror!

Small Things by Joe DeRouen



“It’s a hot June morning in a small Midwestern town when fifteen-year-old Shawn Spencer arrives at the church for his best friend Tanner’s funeral. Though his drowning was officially ruled an accident, Tanner’s sister Jenny swears she saw something rise up from the Carthage Lake to pull the struggling teenager beneath the surface.

Shawn doesn’t believe in monsters… but he will…

The real threat, however, lies in the man behind the monster, a mysterious old man who has vowed to settle an old grudge and regain something that was stolen from him decades earlier. To survive the dark days and nights ahead, Shawn must not only decipher what the man is after, he must move past his own grief, fears, and insecurities, and learn to trust in Jenny, the disgraced town sheriff, and, most importantly, in himself.

The Small Things trilogy spans forty years and three generations in a tale of murder, betrayal, corruption, sacrifice, love, redemption, faith and magic that culminates in a showdown that will pit the very forces of heaven and hell against Shawn and his family in a battle for the future of mankind and the world itself.”


Grade:  A

This wan’t a short novel ,but any means, but I didn’t want it to be either. I found myself flipping pages, over and over, getting deeper into the story, and losing hours. This isn’t just your typical monster story, though the author gets you to believe that at first. You fear the monster, you worry for the characters, then you dive deeper into the story, and see what the real monster is, and there’s no turning back. You are hooked into this story, and you want to see it play out.

All the characters are well written and interesting, and feel realistic. A nice time setting for this book, in the 70s, made everything fit together much nicely then if it were taking place in current day. We feel for the character, we root for them, and worry for them. They are a part of the story, and we become one too.

Joe has mastered horror. He gives us the creepy details, the wonderful foreshadowing, and the threat of danger. He keeps us looking over our shoulder for the monster, and leaving the lights on while reading. There’s a mix of Stephen King, James Patterson, and even some J.K Rowling in here. He crafts the horror, the mystery, the magic and suspense into one story you can’t stop reading.

Even the first sentence grabs you.. Some one is following him. Right away, we want to know, we get involved, and it’s a ride we won’t soon forget!

I’m so glad there’s more books to follow this one because honestly, Joe DeRouen is a great writer who is full of potential.

This is another one of those books that I wish I had in paperback, signed, on my shelf for everyone to see, because he’s going places with his writing, and I’m glad to have been a part of it! J

** I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own, and not influenced in any way.

About the Author:

Joe was born in Carthage, Illinois, and currently lives in Rogers, Arkansas with his artist wife Andee, their son Fletcher, and their cats Lucky, Milo, and Camptown. Joe is a freelance writer and a substitute teacher at Benton County School of the Arts. In addition to writing, he enjoys purchasing (and occasionally watching) copious amounts of Blu-Ray discs, listening to music, playing video games, and collecting Mego action figures from the 1970s. Small Things is his first novel. Threads, the sequel to Small Things and the second book in the trilogy, will be published sometime in late 2013. You can write to Joe at or visit his website at

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