Book Jacket


rank 2201
word count 37594
date submitted 09.05.2008
date updated 10.02.2009
genres: Fiction, Crime, Thriller, Horror
classification: adult

Sinema: The Northumberland Massacre

Rod Glenn

A film obsessed serial killer stalks a remote Northumberland community in this dark contemporary thriller.


A winter's tale with a sting.

There's a newcomer to the small Northumberland village of Haydon ... a charming novelist and film buff, researching a crime thriller about a serial killer on a rampage in a remote Northumberland community. The only trouble is, it's a work in progress and it's going to be non-fiction.

392 innocent men, women and children stand in his way to achieving a sadistic dream.

As the worst winter in more than a century approaches, can two investigating police officers trapped with the terrorised residents stop this monster?

Novel complete (95,000 words)

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singapore wrote 179 days ago

Ooooh! I like this very much. But I think you have probably disappeared. Fantastic, crisp imagery and very polished. Good Stuff :)

Gauis wrote 1408 days ago

lovely, mass murder in northumberland - Simon The Soul of Charlie Marconi

Rod Glenn wrote 1519 days ago

Shameless, Nick, but a canny ploy! Good luck with Mirror in the Sky.

Nick Poole2 wrote 1519 days ago


Ease those weary, withered limbs from your coffin. Push away the stone from the mouth of the tomb.

You have one last task to perform. One last, sacred shelf to confer.

Whether you were plugger, spammer, gusher or troll, whether you flirted or fought in the forum or beavered away in the shadows, now is the time for your resurrection.

One last time. Marshall your strength, muster the last vestiges of your power and carry out your final Authonomy act:

Back my book, MIRROR IN THE SKY.

Then, only then, you may rest easy in your Authonomy grave.

Nick Poole2 (formerly known as NickP)

Rod Glenn wrote 1800 days ago

Thanks for your kind and constructive comments, Judith. I really appreciate someone taking the time to read and comment on my work.

Rod Glenn wrote 1836 days ago

Thanks for your kind comments, Tifa. My wife is from Blyth and went to school near Ashington. This was one medium to help get it noticed to a wider audience. As it's only published through a small press it hasn't had much media attention (apart from in the North East and North Yorkshire where I've had some really good publicity), so every little bit helps!


Tifa wrote 1836 days ago

haha. How awesome you've been published! I jumped on this WL bandwagon when I saw it was set in Northumberland. Mentions Newcastle, even better! I live in Ashington [mining village up yonder]. Awesomeness. I'm a little intimidated by the violence, but thats cos I write a lot of sugary sweet things, but Im always willing to dip into new genres. Well you dont need much commenting if its published. lol. its written well, flows well. published. Il back it so more ppl can read this good book. x

[Eliphe Tiny-Wen]

Rod Glenn wrote 1871 days ago

Thanks for reading the prologue, Frankie. Sinema has now been published, so I can't make any changes to it now, but I appreciate the comments. The book is extremely violent when the violence kicks off, so the prologue and opening chapters were designed to slowly build up to the shocking action.

Thanks again,


Frankie Bower wrote 1871 days ago

Hi Rod,

I'm not sure if it's brave or insane to betray your killer in the blurb, however I love the work in progress/non fiction line!

I think you need to find a more compelling opening line though. I think you're relying too much on the blurb to get the reader through that prologue and I'd like something a little stronger in the writing itself. Give us a body. Give us a threat. Give us something to really anticipate.

I hope this helps.


Rod Glenn wrote 1901 days ago

Thanks for the comment, Emap. I look forward to hearing more when you've read the rest of the extract.

emap wrote 1902 days ago

Hi Rod, just finished reading the first two chapters and am thoroughly hooked. Very clever set-up. Have to stop now, but will read on asap.

wainwright& priestley wrote 1964 days ago

Oh! A winter scene...a remote community...great scene-setting. I look forward to reading more, being a dedicated crime-fiction fan!

Rod Glenn wrote 2019 days ago

Thanks, Selena - I look forward to your comments. I'm guessing Northumberland will become a very different place indeed for you... ;)

Selena Compton wrote 2019 days ago

Hello Rod, this is my home terrirory so I'll read with interest. Will Northumberland look the same once I've finished reading your book though?! Regards, Selena

Rod Glenn wrote 2019 days ago

Thanks, I'll certainly take a look at that.

Brandwood wrote 2019 days ago

Hello Rod. Many thanks for visiting 'God's Joke Book', and for your comment. If you are writing a new book on the future following a cataclysm you might like to dip into 'The Great Collapse', a hitory written in the future.

Rod Glenn wrote 2020 days ago

Thanks, CJ. I'll look forward to your comments.

Kacie wrote 2035 days ago

Another compelling and excellent book from the talented Rod Glenn. I enjoyed Sinema immensely, even though it's not the type of book I normally read - but Rod's writing has a way of drawing you in and keeping you engaged right up to the end. I love his descriptive way of writing, very believable and lifelike and, as a keen film fan, I loved all the various film references in Sinema too. A great read and I'm looking forward to his next book!

Sarie wrote 2041 days ago

A chilling pageturner that, although it was really gruesome, I just HAD to know what happened next. Can't wait for your next book Rod.

The Reaper wrote 2044 days ago

Hi Rod. Thought I'd take a look at Sinema as you were nice enough to comment on my book Reaper and I like what I see. I'm a movie buff myself and thought the quotes were well chosen and let us take a peek at the killer's(?) mania. I've only got a few chapters in but want to read more already. The prologue was effective and dreamlike sets up the normalcy of Hannibal Whitman neatly. Like the idea that serial killers don't have to come across as drooling sickos. Write on.

Rod Glenn wrote 2046 days ago

Thanks again, Richie. "Geordie", "Farming" and "Mass Murder" do make an interesting combination!!! :D

Thanks also to Nicx, Karen and Louise. It is a violent book, so I understand it isn't to everyone's taste, but as always I really appreciate you taking the time to read it and to comment. Thanks!

richie_d wrote 2046 days ago

Glad you found my comments helpful--with regards to crits in general, in the end you, the writer, are the one who has to make the decision. What I would stress in this case is that you need to bear in mind the dynamics, the ups and downs of the story. If you keep the prologue as is, then you need to have something happen pretty early on in Chapter One. If you have something gruesome happen in the prologue, then you can afford the luxury of a more descriptive first chapter. Anyway, any book whose tags include "Geordie", "Farming" and "Mass Murder" is bound to do well! Good luck.

nicx27 wrote 2046 days ago

This really wasn't my cup of tea, although I think it was a well-plotted book. It was a bit too violent for my liking and, if I didn't know several ladies who have enjoyed it, I would have said it was very much a man's book. However, the author is a very pleasant chap ;o)

Karen&Luc wrote 2046 days ago

I got this book as a Chistmas present and really enjoyed it. I liked the fact that although the plans he makes are vicious and awful throughout the beginning of the book you can still manage to actually like the character in a way. He has his similarities I felt with the tv drama character 'Dexter' in terms of sociability and humour while disguising a deeper darker secret. I also liked the varied film references that are implemented.
Sinema is well written and the plot grips you from the very beginning...good bedtime reading folks!!

Louiseog wrote 2047 days ago

I loved this book although it frightened the pants off me! A real sense of menace and madness - great!

Rod Glenn wrote 2047 days ago

Thanks, Paul and Karl for your comments. It's interesting how some people like the prologue and some don't think it fits properly. I'm really torn on that now!!! Much appreciated and glad you both liked it.

paul house wrote 2047 days ago

Fast moving and visual. Unlike some of the other readers I liked the first chapter and thought it set the scene perfectly.

karl wrote 2047 days ago

Crackin read from start to finish. Who'd have thought such a mild mannered gent such as he could think up such wholesome gruesomeness. Its a great plot and unearths some deep seated human traits and the big screen references... just a must!!! 10/10 but defo not for the coffee table! - just anywhere else, train, plane, holiday in a small country village...

Rod Glenn wrote 2048 days ago

Thanks for taking a look, Robert. I did research the Northumbria Police Helicopter and it can fly in the poor conditions described in the prologue, but they only fly under dire circumstances like those being described.

Just to clarify the use of the word 'blizzard'. It doesn't signify a whiteout - that is a particularly bad blizzard. The definition of the word 'blizzard' is '(n.) a storm with widespread snowfall accompanied by strong winds' which is the use I give it in the prologue. I hope that clarifies.

Thanks again for reading and commenting.

RobertB wrote 2048 days ago

I like the writing, but I'm not sure about the helicopter journey. You say they're in a blizzard - that would mean whiteout, the pilot wouldn't be able to see a thing, and if there are any helicopters which can fly in that sort of situation these days, I very much doubt whether the police have them. I remember one mountain rfescue where the corpse died simply because the helicopter couldn't fly and we had to stretcher her off. Thing like that used to happen regularly.

Then a bit further on it's evident that they can see where they're going. I think you need to clarify things a bit. I'm not too keen on the prologue overall; it sets the scene, but nothing happens.

Rod Glenn wrote 2049 days ago

Thank you, Richie. I really appreciate you taking the time to read it and to comment with such detail. That really helps. I will take on board everything you've said and give it a great deal of thought.

Thanks, Dale too for taking the time to read it and glad you enjoyed it. The chapter buttons are out of sink because chapter 1 is actually the prologue then chapter 2 is 1 etc.

Thanks again!


Dale wrote 2049 days ago

Really well written. I was only going to read a couple of chapters but I read them all except for ch 6. It keeps coming up as ch 4 which is really ch 5 on the chapters buttons.

richie_d wrote 2050 days ago

Hello, thanks for the opportunity to read your work. You have a really good prose style, and a dark sense of humour! Loved the film quotes and the basic premise. But this does need some work to improve the level of suspense. Some points:-

I'm going to echo the earlier comment about the prologue. It doesn't have enough drama in it to justify its inclusion. For the kind of story you're telling, you would be better served by focusing on some moment of shock. That way you can afford to wind down the tension in Chapter One. As it is, the prologue doesn't get me excited, and then Chapter One further loses my interest.

Also, your protagonist has too easy a time of things. Only when the police finally turn up does he begin to have something to stop him achieving his goal. Perhaps alternating chapters between "Hannibal" and the police officers right from the beginning would give us a sense that there is going to be more dramatic conflict. At the moment, he decides to go and kill everyone in the village, then proceeds to do so. It could work in film, where the audience wouldn't be privvy to his plan, but seeing as we're in his head in the novel, we know what he's planning -- the question is, what's going to stop him?

So, to summarise: good premise (too dark for my personal taste, but your humour lightens things) but you need to work on dramatic conflict, give your protagonist problems to solve.

Finally, "Hannibal"? Do you really want to compare your work with the best serial killer novel of all time? Why should the reader read your work rather than Thomas Harris? It's a tough thing to say, I know, but if you make reference to other works, yours has to be on par. So I would recommend something a little more subtle for the killer's alternative name.

Anyway, hope you're not left feeling too pissed off by this review. You're an excellent writer, you just need to do some editing on the structure. As always, remember that this is just my opinion so feel free to ignore everything I've said and follow your gut instincts.

Rod Glenn wrote 2051 days ago

I'm really interested in what people think of chapter 5 because it has the first quite brutal murder in it.

Rod Glenn wrote 2052 days ago

I've added the next chapter, guys. Let me know what you think.

Rod Glenn wrote 2052 days ago

Thanks for reading and for taking the time to comment, Sylvia. It's greatly appreciated.

Sylvia wrote 2053 days ago

Intriguing opening, Rod, with hints of a terrible event having taken place. Then chapter 2 introduces Whitman, and what a very strange chap he is - obviously obsessed with movies, and in the habit of talking to himself. Also it rapidly becomes clear what he's planning. In 3 are we meeting some of the potential victims, hm? I suspect you will make us care for many of these people before Whitman executes his plans.

A few of my favourites: 'One elbowed its way to the fore'. 'Hannibal Whitman'. 'even smell a rose in such a way'. 'I'm eighty-four and still growing me own veggies'. 'I hope you don't bite'. 'Get off your cross'.

Some of the travelling seemed a bit drawn out to me, though others may really enjoy it. A couple of suggestion: 'With only a mild awareness, he (the man) continued'. 'dust, drafts and foist' (??).

Rod Glenn wrote 2059 days ago

Thanks for that, Sam. It does seem to be very difficult to get an agent or publisher interested in the horror genre, but there does seem to be an increased demand for it recently, so hopefully that will change. I published this one through Wasteland Press. It's been selling well mainly in the north east where the book is set, but I have been getting sales throughout the UK too. I have been pushing it pretty hard and doing lots of book-signings etc mainly with Borders and WHSmith.

Sam Hackett wrote 2059 days ago

Hello Rod, this is good stuff. Share your taste in books too. Which publisher published you? I hear that "horror" is a bit of a dirty word, but not sure about that myself as it's still a major seller with a huge fanbase. Anyway, I think it's time is back, judging by the amount of new horror/dark thriller novels and films coming out and the massive popularity of them. Hope so as to my mind there's two major emotions: fear and love. Horror can bring them both on wonderfully. (You might like my book on here as it's a dark thriller/supernatural crime, although I understand if you'd rather spend your time reading Dean Koontz et al!). All the very best. I'll keep an eye out for more of the story, can see it going on my bookshelf when there's a few more chapters.

Rod Glenn wrote 2059 days ago

Thanks, Derek. The book has already been published, but I am looking at making some changes for the 2nd edition.

Derek Brockhouse wrote 2059 days ago

Hi Rod, your excellent description of the book got my attention, full marks. Your writing is very good and sets the scenes well but the prologue didn't get me hooked. Neither did chapter one. Chapters two and three got my attention and I wanted to read on. In my opinion, the prologue needs to punch you in the face and scream SERIAL KILLINGS. Chapter one is too drawn out. Cut the description of ginger to a paragraph or two and get him to the small village ready for chapter two. Do this and I'll buy it!

Rod Glenn wrote 2061 days ago

Thanks, Visinker. I made this story a bit of a slow burner on purpose because the second half of the book is so intense and fast-paced, but I agree that I've probably not got the balance quite right. Thanks again for your comments and for taking the time to read it.

Visinker wrote 2062 days ago

Great to read something set in Northumberland. (Planning to move there shortly...hmm may have to change my mind!) I agree with what others have said though - you could get to the more exciting bits a little quicker and give us some extra clues as to what's going on. Great potential though.

Rod Glenn wrote 2097 days ago

Thanks, Debbie and Richard - I really appreciate you taking the time to read and comment on it and I will take on board those comments.

Richard the Author wrote 2160 days ago

I really enjoyed this. I too wonder about the first chapter. I wonder whether you might be better to add a more punchy chapter at the beginning; perhaps one of the murders. Just to really whet the reader's appetite.
But I enjoyed the book and was gutted when I got to the end of chapter 4.
Good luck with this.

Debbie wrote 2169 days ago

I liked this very much - read all 4 chapters, but for me, the story didn't start until chapter 2. To be honest, had I picked this up in a shop, I probably wouldn't have read past the first chapter - but I persevered and by chapter 3 I was hooked, although I can't help wondering whether you should give this guy some motivation for whatever it is that he's planning. Or maybe your hints are so subtle I just haven't seen them yet and all will be revealed? Good stuff anyway!