These Nameless Things by Shawn Smucker (review)

In a village in the shadow of a mountain that boasts a warning sign straight out of Dante’s Inferno, a small group of traumatized people are waiting with no memory of their lives before the horror that each has escaped from across that mountain. As the story unfolds and memories begin to return, this mystery thriller holds the reader on that uneasy line between suspecting and knowing.

With the narrator an admitted liar, other stories – from various media – came to mind as Dan first waits for and then goes in search of his brother. A brother I wasn’t sure, as a reader, that I really wanted him to find.

Though I delve into the occasional thriller, the tension of reading them is out of my comfort zone. Generally with thrillers, and particularly in the case of These Nameless Things, it is the writing more than the story itself that holds my interest. And since it was praise of Shawn Smucker’s writing by other (non thriller) authors I enjoy that prompted me to pick this book up, I’d say that it lived up to expectations and I’ll be reading more from this author in the future.


These Nameless Things by Shawn Smucker | Revell, June 2020 | paperback, 336 pages

This review refers to a finished copy I voluntarily received from the publisher. A positive review was not required and all opinions expressed are my own.


About the Book

Once held captive and tortured on a mysterious mountain, Dan was lucky to have made it out alive. But freedom comes at a cost. Left with little memory of the horrific ordeal, Dan can recall one thing–his escape meant leaving his brother behind.

With each day that passes, Dan waits with the other survivors in hope of his brother’s escape. But just as long-forgotten memories start rising to the surface, the sudden appearance of a wounded woman throws everything into question. As Dan struggles to know who to trust, he is caught once again in a paralyzing moral dilemma:

How far will he go to save the people he loves?  

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