‘The White’ by Matt Micheli – Review

The uninvited and unwelcomed turns in to the unexpected as a blizzard brings much more than the cold…

In Texas, blizzards and arctic storms don’t happen often leaving ‘Dan’ and his family unexpectedly caught up in much more than just weather related problems because the estranged Mother unexpectedly arrives and throws a social spanner in the works. Tension begins to boil but the temperature outside plummets in what becomes a crazy but fun and even brutal affair that I did not expect to go to the places it did, but it was very enjoyable.

Family dynamics and history can be complex sometimes and when ‘Margo’ unexpectedly turns up to see her granddaughter on the eve of an artic level storm, it sets the household on a gradual but declining social path of bitterness and resentment. ‘Margo’ or the ‘Ice Queen’ as she is known is the instigator of most social related problems in this short story packed with so much tension and atmosphere.

‘Bad things always seemed to follow Margo, also known in this house as The Ice Queen, misery and destruction never more than an arm’s length away…’

She’s behind with the times and doesn’t really approve of much – the perhaps vessel towards tensions moving to the murderous but something else, a presence or atmosphere is lurking and when the snow does fall and leaves everyone stranded, it gradually makes itself known.

As the family dysfunctionality explodes inside, ‘Dan’ and his daughter’s boyfriend must venture out into the bitterness of icy conditions to find vital supplies from their next door neighbour and this when the real twists begin. Although brutal and even confusing at first, Matt Micheli leaves us with everything explained and with a story that combines claustrophobic/stranded or even cabin fever themes of being stuck in a storm beside the tense family hating each other dynamic and that all important unexpected twist. Sometimes it makes you wish you’d stayed inside.

4 Stars – The Review first premiered via Reedsy Discovery

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