The Evil Trance by Mark Dysan

My review

Horror is one genre that I feel I have not conquered my fear of, and so holding on to my courage, I ventured into this book hoping that I would be scared but not so scared that I wouldn’t be able to finish the book. And boy, am I glad I chose this book!!

It had all the elements: supernatural, mythological, horror, and thriller. At one point in the story, I had goosebumps and wasn’t sure if I should continue reading. Believe me, finding the guts to read a book which scared me to death, is a mark of my valor. And I wanted more of the scary parts… 

The author, Mark Dysan in his debut, has taken parts of Indian mythology, brushed away the dust and cobwebs off the long lost tale, filled it with thrills and twists, added the scary bits to it, put in traces of a love story, polished it up with modern psychology and investigation… And lo and voila, you have a spine-chiller, which captures the imagination of childhood, with the added adult element of fear and suspense. A complete nightmare-giving, hair-raising roller-coaster of a novel. 

The story goes thus; a man, Anand watches a movie, which turns out to be more adult than expected, and the excitement was high enough to kill, I mean literally kill… He is a corpse in the next few days. And the same pattern is seen in two other people. Anyone who watches the movie becomes a dehydrated corpse in the next few days. Didn’t I say it is a banger of a story!!!  (pun intended)

But worry not!! Help is at hand, and a renowned psychiatrist, Dr. Mitra, decides to help Ananda along with his assistant Dr. Gopi and an investigator, Shukla, to get to the bottom of the mystery of dead bodies. But slowly and steadily, there are changes seen in Dr. Mitra, both in physical and mental realm. Things are not as they appear. There seems to be something evil, putting the men into a trance… 

What is killing these men? How are they attacked? What is in the movie? Who is behind all this? What happens to Dr. Mitra? Is the thing lurking in the hidden shadows human, animal, or something else?? 

The answers to all the questions are found in this scary novel Evil Trance. The author has done a fabulous job in creating an unearthly, creepy story amidst an ominous, ghostly atmostphere. I loved the feeling of other worldly which caused shivers and tingles when I read the scary bits. 

There are a few niggles, which do derail the fear factor away, the supernatural part should have been a bit more horrific and eerie. The chapters did not flow smoothly, at times, so it drew away the concentration when it should have pulled me in further. But these did not detract my interest in getting my blood curdled in fear. I did gasp out loud at certain places!! 

I have to confess as I read this novel, lost in the warmth of my comforter, I am pretty sure, sleep ain’t gonna be my best friend tonight. Mark Dysan has captured horror in his words in such a way that when the room chilled in the scene, I am almost certain, the same happened to me too…. Did it really happen?  I wonder… 

There is a line in the book

The tree creaked and leaves rustled. There was no wind, but the branches swayed, as if caught in a strong wind. After a moment, the tree became silent again. 

I solemnly swear that when the leaves in the tree rustled in the unknown breeze, I felt a shiver run down my spine, leaving a trail of goosebumps….

Brilliant stuff, I say so quaking in fear, lying awake past midnight with all the lights in the house glaring!!!

My rating : 4 stars 

About the Author 

Mark Dysan is a pseudonym born out of an anagram of the author’s real name. He is a software engineer from Hyderabad, India. Writing was never on his mind until he won the first place for an English essay writing competition at high school. Since then, he has enjoyed writing poems and short stories, mostly for his friends, just to make them read something out of the ordinary and to get to know different perspectives.

The Evil Trance is his first novel.

Book blurb 

A seemingly innocuous film grabs the attention of a young lad. But the store owner, who also finds himself drawn to it, pays the price for it, with his life.

Enter Dr Mitra, a man of science. He finds his very basic grounding in science threatened, as uncanny events around him propel him to question what he has learned and held onto so far. Gopi, his junior, and Shukla, a private detective, hop onto the scene even as Feroz, an inspector, is busy chasing the many suspicious events from the purview of the law. Murky waters must be charted to understand the myriad ramifications of what they have stumbled upon.

And this is no mean adventure. It is, but an Evil Trance.

Product Details 

Publication date : 24th July 2017

Publisher : Notion Press

Language : English 

Available on 

Amazon USA

Amazon UK

Amazon India 

A supernatural horror which kills

14 thoughts on “The Evil Trance by Mark Dysan

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