Ovi Magazine

Bane, n: something that causes misery or death.

'Bane' was not a warning about the quality of the book, just the title of a cracking horror/suspense novel penned by Joe Donnelly. ... the experience was an enlightening and lightning one.

Donnelly has been described by some as the British Stephen King, which is a comparison I can neither confirm nor deny since I have never read anything by King, but if it is true then I can't wait to read his work. Bane powers its way to the finale, with every chapter throwing a fraction of light on the mystery, further twists of horror and paragraphs that make you shudder at the author's imagination.

Describing the book as 'fast-paced' doesn't feel enough, since the book has the feel of a movie treatment. The story really reads like a film; character development is succinct, the action is vividly described and the dialogue between the characters has a touch of cinema about it. The scariest moments come through the author's descriptions of the town becoming delusional and psychotic.

Bane was a thoroughly good read, with plenty of  events that do real psychological damage, plus all the main characters are immediately likeable. 


Reader’s Review:

Joe Donnelly is an author I came across recently, who I would say is the British version of a mixture of Stephen King and Richard Laymon.

He predominately sets his stories in small towns or villages in Scotland where legends and myths abound. His writing style is excellent and he manages to describe scenes so vividly, you almost feel like an eyewitness to events, rather than just a reader.

Definitely one that you’ll stay up very late too read, although maybe it’s not such a good idea reading this when it’s dark outside, and the house starts making those noises it never seems to make during the day.....


The Guardian “Bane..succeeds in scaring the living daylights out of everyone around…Joe Donnelly has approached the horror story head on.” 


TODAY: “ BANE Scales the heights of sheer horror…not for the fainthearted.” Today.





“A magnificent book hiding the type of horrific secrets I adore” – Fear.


“Fans of Clive Barker should be sufficiently harrowed.” – Observer.





A magnificent psychological thriller, Incubus is guaranteed to send an icy shiver through even the most hardened connoisseur.” – Pulp Fiction.


“An intriguing supernatural detective story.” – SFX Magazine.





“Scotland’s Stephen King” – Sunday Post.


“Expect to be gripped from beginning to end.” – Maxim.





“Joe Donnelly just gets better and better… generates a spiralling sense of unease as the potent force of the forest is awakened.” – The List.


“A bold and bloody book!” - Aberdeen Evening Express





“Joe Donnelly scaled the heights of sheer horror…Not for the fainthearted” – Today.


“Exciting and highly readable.” – The Guardian.


“Donnelly’s description of the natural world is as interesting and clearly drawn as that of the supernatural.” – Observer.






“Pulse-racing horror…very satisfying.” – Glasgow herald.


“Donnelly scores with unusually believable characters, well realised settings and thoroughly researched mythological backgrounds.” – Daily Telegraph.


Elizabeth 1983

Donnelly's portrayal of the 'Shee' is excellent, he goes into so much detail that you can picture exactly what it looks like, and believe me it's a terrible sight. There is so much more to this novel than what I have written, it delves right into Irish history and folklore, and is truly an amazing read.



"The Shee" is one of the most terrifying books I have ever read. What makes it so frightening is the feeling of "realness" that I got throughout. The places mentioned, the characters involved and the masterfully descriptive writing of JoeDonnelly really stirred something within me . What also cannot fail to impress you is the level of work and research that Donnelly put into this book before going to print. 




“Havock Junction raises Joe Donnelly to being one opf the two best horror writers in the UK…probably the best horror novel of the year.” Fantasy Bookshelf.