A Dark Psychological Thriller
Welcome to The Cabin Sessions. Are you ready to be entertained?
About The Cabin Sessions
The Cabin Sessions is a confronting, hard-hitting, dark psychological thriller told with acid wit. Themes of abuse are explored through minds distorted by fear and corrupted by hatred and delusion; this is a tale in which redemption is gained in unexpected ways.
It’s Christmas Eve when hapless musician Adam Banks stands on the bridge over the river that cleaves the isolated village of Burton. A storm is rolling into the narrow mountain pass. He thinks of turning back. Instead, he resolves to fulfil his obligation to perform the guest spot at The Cabin Sessions. He should be looking forward to it, but fear stirs when he opens the door on the Cabin’s incense-choked air.
Philip Stone is already there, brooding. He observes with a ruthless eye the regulars, from sleazy barmaid Hannah Fisher, to old crone Cynthia Morgan.
Meanwhile, Philip’s sister, Eva, prepares to take a bath. It¿s a ritual – she’s a breath holder. At twenty-eight, Eva has returned to Burton to finish the business of her past, as memories begin to surface concerning one fateful day by the river and the innocence of her beloved brother…
Hear me chat about The Cabin Sessions on The Panic Room Radio Show
Reviews of The Cabin Sessions
First review – “Building up to a big revelation, the book leaves the readers turning pages as fast as they can” https://bookworldliness.wordpress.com/2017/10/22/the-cabin-sessions/
“I don’t normally ready such dark fiction but found myself gripped in horrified fascination by Blackthorn’s subtle storytelling and accomplished prose. This is a must read for all who like to be profoundly disturbed by their reading. Or for others, like me, who are simply keen to see the best of what this genre can hold.” – Elizabeth Jane Corbett . Visit this link for an in-depth interview http://elizabethjanecorbett.com/2017/11/22/cabin-sessions-interview-dark-fiction-writer-isobel-blackthorn/
“Well! Talk about being blown away. If you are in search of a stonking read with delicious descriptions – chilling horror (very psychological in places) and perfect prose then this is the book for you. The horror was delivered with sophistication and stealth – so much so that when I wanted to pull back or run for cover I couldn’t. The story telling is masterly and I would class this book – author, as a modern day classic.
Unique- individual- and unapologetic. To me was as good as a holiday- I love that feeling you get when a read has reached every wanton corner of your psyche and cleaned up! Thank you to the author for a truly defining read!” – Amazon reviewer Kathleen McCarthy
“The Cabin Sessions is mostly a slow-burn literary mystery heavy with dark edges, while dabbling in moments of suspense and horror. I’ve never read anything quite like it, which says something in itself…Enticing and intriguing and entertaining.” – Eddie Generous, Unnerving Magazine
Here me chat with Eddie Unnerving from Unnerving Magazine. http://www.unnervingmagazine.com/single-post/2017/11/10/Interview-With-Isobel-Blackthorn
“The Cabin Sessions is NOT an easy read, Isobel has written a dense novel in which every word has been carefully selected and given full value.. so it should be respected and read that way!
Set on a wild and stormy Christmas Eve, the book starts with a sense of threat and menace, as the regulars straggle in, carrying their instruments. throughout the night. We are introduced to these locals and their relationships, but share a great deal of the action through the eyes of Eve and her brother Philip.
Eve’s diary, which we follow, paints a picture of a strange, introverted young woman who exercises a weird practise as a way of asserting control of her life. Her brother Philip, with whom she lives, presents as an arrogant and self-centred man with a dark side to his character.
This is a book filled with ‘characters’… and we get to take a peep into their lives and thoughts as the tension rises page by page.
I can’t say too much … not only because I haven’t yet finished the book, but because I fear dropping a ‘spoiler’! Read it for yourself!!” – Ann Creber, broadcaster and book critic
The Making of The Cabin Sessions
The genesis of The Cabin Sessions began in 2012, during a period of my life in which I attended an open mic every Wednesday night without fail as I was living with the host, Scottish troubadour and gifted songwriter Alex Legg. Every Wednesday, I would help him carry in the gear and pack up afterwards. That year, I was writing short stories in between being Alex’s groupie. I had yet to write my first novel, probably because I was having too much fun going to his gigs. I knew all his songs inside out and loved every single one of them. Naturally.
One night, on the way back down the mountain to our home, I had the idea that an open mic would make a good setting for a novel. Alex enthused straight away. The next day we sat in a cafe and cooked up the story.
Together we came up with a bunch of characters, including his doppelgänger, Benny Muir, who appears in my short story, ‘All Because of You’, named after one of his songs. Alex supplied me with tips and quips and witty insights that could only come from an open mic host. With a notebook full of jottings, I figured out a plot and set to work.
Three chapters of composing later and our relationship came to an abrupt end. My creative spark for the story was gone and I shelved the project.
Two years went by and I received news that Alex had passed away. It was a huge shock for everyone and I felt compelled to preserve his memory. I re-read my old notes and chapters of The Cabin Sessions. For me, it was like gazing at old photos.
Then, something astonishing happened. I realised Alex’s passing had liberated my story. I made a critical creative decision, and it was as though I had Alex’s permission to do it. I won’t say what it is. After that, things moved fast. In days I was hacking into those early chapters, revising the characters and tightening the plot. There were times I felt Alex was right there with me, urging me on. The result is a highly original brooding and atmospheric psychological thriller with a surprising ending.
The Cabin Sessions is my way of paying respects to Alex Legg and the two transformative years I spent with him. Even if my offering is grotesque, absurd, hard-hitting, at times confronting and there is not a skerrick of romance to be found. I honestly believe Alex would not have had it any other way.
You can purchase The Cabin Sessions on Amazon, Google Play and iTunes, Barnes & Noble and all good booksellers.