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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

BOOK REVIEW: The Very Old Man

TITLE: The Very Old Man
AUTHOR: Jenny Milchman
PUBLISHER: Istoria Books
FORMAT: E-book (PDF), 20 pages
GENRE: Short Stories, Mystery
ASIN: B004W8D0H6


A chance encounter in a grocery store spooks a young mother. When small accidents begin to happen around her young child, she wonders if the old man who'd given her daughter a quarter is to blame.


I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

This book, "The Very Old Man", is sold in Kindle format together with another short story which I did not review.

This is a very spooky bedtime story!

Denise, the protagonist, is the mother of a nine-month old girl named Bethany. She is a little over-protective of her daughter and, in this case, she might have good reason!

Strange things begin to happen following the encounter with the old man: The baby has a few accidents and unexplained things occur in Bethany's nursery. Do these strange occurrences have anything to do with the coin the old man gave to Bethany? Is it cursed? Or is it Denise's own paranoia?

Milchman is an engaging storyteller! She did not tie everything up into a neat little package for the reader. Rather, she leaves the reader to ponder over the story to try to figure it out!

There is no gore or anything of that nature, so it does not quite fit the horror genre - yet it is more than a mystery. The book is more subtle than horror, reminiscent of a good ghost story.

With it being a short story, I was pleasantly surprised to find that I enjoyed it as much as I did! I did not expect to be drawn in so much and so fast in such a short time. My only complaint was that it wasn't longer! I think Milchman could weave a fabulous full-length tale! I would love to read more from her!

Be warned: Any mom who reads this book will shudder a little!

MY RATING: 4.5 stars!


  1. OOh - sounds good! I love it when an author can throw a shiver down my spine without giving in to gore.

  2. Me too, Dana! Check back for an author interview and giveaway!

  3. Thank you so much for the review, Darlene, and for your comment, Dana. It's funny--Stephen King is probably by my all-time favorite author, and my favorites of his are where gore doesn't play a role, or much of one--THE DEAD ZONE, MISERY (OK, there's the hobbling, but still :) and others.

    I also very much appreciate your remark about wanting a longer work. My debut novel, COVER OF SNOW, is a literary thriller, and is coming out from Ballantine in Jan/Feb 2013. I am so excited for that it's like a kid & Christmas!! No, twenty Christmases all at once :)

  4. Hi, Jenny! I hope you'll keep me in mind for reviewing Cover of Snow when it comes out! :) I'd love to read it!


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