Dead Man's Eye

Rated 4.11/5 based on 18 reviews
A corneal transplant does more than correct Joanna Raines sight. It allows her to see something that doesn't want to be seen. Something evil. Something that threatens mankind. The only trouble is that no one believes her, and by the time they do, it might be too late ...

Seeing is believing. Now Joanna just has to convince everyone else. More

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  • Category: Fiction » Horror » General
  • Words: 33,930
  • Language: English
  • ISBN: 9781452347561
About Shaun Jeffrey

Shaun Jeffrey was brought up in a house in a cemetery, so it was only natural for his prose to stray towards the dark side when he started writing. He has had three novels published, 'The Kult', 'Deadfall' and 'Evilution, and one collection of short stories, 'Voyeurs of Death'. Among his other writing credits are short stories published in Cemetery Dance, Surreal Magazine, Dark Discoveries and Shadowed Realms. The Kult was optioned for film by Gharial Productions.

Learn more about Shaun Jeffrey

Also by This Author


GraceKrispy reviewed on May 25, 2011

Joanna's corneal transplant surgery was successful. Rather than continuing to suffer with failing sight, she now has the ability to see things she hasn't been able to see clearly for a while. But not everything is meant to be seen, and Joanna may soon come to realize she may have been safer going blind. At least when you're blind, you can't see the evil that lurks within some of your most trusted friends...

This novella by Shaun Jeffrey puts a nice twist on a classic horror theme. Joanna is (almost) the only one who can see what she sees, but getting someone to believe her in time to save others may be next to impossible. With such a classic premise, the storyline tends towards the predictable. I found the prose to be very simplistic and lacking in maturity. The resulting writing style is more "young adult" in feel, although the story itself does not fall into that category. The uncomplicated writing did make for a very quick and easy read, but it didn't allow me to immerse myself in the horror and to feel what Joanna was feeling. There was too much explained and not enough left for the reader to experience. The story lacked "voice" that would have allowed the reader to fully experience the horror firsthand. More detail and less explanation would have made it feel less like watching a horror movie and more like participating in it.

This is a story driven by events and not characters. The characters feel secondary to the plot events that drive this story. The pacing of the events is nicely done, and really helps to build to the climax, but it feels somewhat monochromatic without strong character development. In particular, I wanted more of Lincoln and his experience of being inhabited by a demon. I think more could have been done with his quandary. I also felt that Margaret, the other recipient of the corneal transplant, could have played a more integral role (or else be left out entirely). Joanna goes to visit Margaret twice to enlist her help, and each time, she gives up when Margaret turns her down. It felt really incomplete. It was obvious Margaret had seen things she wished she hadn't, but that information and those visits added nothing to the story that I could see. There were also a few handfuls of very small editing errors- not totally distracting, but present.

Overall, it was a fun read and a good bet for fans of horror. It was difficult to put the book down before I got to the end, and I did like the ending. Predictable, perhaps, but satisfying, nonetheless.

Originally posted @ MotherLode blog
(reviewed 5 months after purchase)
Annette reviewed on April 3, 2011

Dead Man’s Eye is a dark and scary novella that may keep you up at night.

Joanna has had a corneal transplant, and as she is waiting for a train to take her to her doctor’s office, she witnesses a horrible accident in which a man loses his arm. But, Joanna sees some type of dark shadow enter his body shortly after the accident. She runs into this man, Lincoln, at the hospital, and he is still shrouded in this dark shadow.

Joanna thinks she’s going crazy and finally decides to tell her boyfriend, Stephen, and her doctor, but they are sure there is some medical explanation for her condition.

Things get worse and worse for Joanna, as she sees her best friend killed and taken over by one of these demons. There are more and more people being taken over, Joanna is being accused of murder, and she’s the only one that can see what is happening.

What can she do? How can she get proof that mankind is in grave danger?

I read this short book in one sitting, and I must admit it really gave me the creeps. The plot is the driving force in this story; we don’t learn much about the characters. I felt, at times, that there was a lot of “telling” and not “showing” to move things along more quickly. If Jeffrey had made this novel a bit longer, with more characterization and a bit more development of the plot, I would have enjoyed it more.

However, this story is worth the time it takes to read it, especially if you want some creep factor. This is an adult book—there are sexual conversations, some violent sex, and language, so definitely not for the younger crowd.
(reviewed 64 days after purchase)
Mel S reviewed on March 27, 2011

Dead Man’s Eye start was fantastically creepy and surprising as Joanna has difficulties with her new eye and starts to see shadows around certain people. The opening scene throws you straight into the action and the early parts are fantastically atmospheric as Joanne struggles to decide if she is going mad, or if what she is seeing is really happening. At some point though the atmosphere disappears and is replaced by action and as Joanne gets more physically involved in events. This changes the mood completely, but needed to make Joanne more proactive.
The relationship between her and her boyfriend is sweet – I loved the banter between them at the start which really grounded it and made it feel real. In fact the dialogue is fantastic throughout – always sounding realistic and reflective of what people actually do say to each other. The writing flowed really well and I just gobbled up the prose. I read the whole novella in one sitting.
However, I was slightly disappointed by the finale – it seemed a little predictable and I would have a preferred a more unexpected twist. However, I would certainly pick up more of Shaun Jeffrey’s books though – especially when I fancy more traditional horror thrills!
(reviewed 72 days after purchase)
A. F. Stewart reviewed on March 21, 2011

Dead Man’s Eye by Shaun Jeffrey is a nice, solid paranormal thriller, with a strong engaging plot. The prose is realistic, well-written and the story holds your attention from start to finish.

Joanna Raines has enough problems already with failing eyesight, a troubling cornea transplant when she discovers she’s seeing strange shadows. She thinks she is going mad, only to discover there’s something far more sinister and supernatural is happening. And she may be the only person who can stop it.

The author does a splendid job of throwing a poor ordinary person into an extraordinary, unbelievable situation and making it both realistic and logical. The heroine reacts and behaves in a genuine, plausible manner that grounds the narrative beautifully. I also found the simple motivation of the antagonists (they’re just looking to wreak mayhem) refreshing; sometimes old-fashioned evil is enough.

Some readers may find the ending unsatisfying, but I loved it. I thought the unresolved, dark closer was the perfect finish. I look forward to reading more novels by this author.
(reviewed 67 days after purchase)
Stephanie reviewed on March 15, 2011

Review first published as Review: Dead Man's Eye by Shaun Jeffrey on Once Upon a Chapter

Dead Man's Eye is a good read if you have an hour or two to kill. For the bargain price of $.99 it'll keep you entertained. To be clear this is in no way, shape or form even close to a romance. It is a horror novella.

Joanna is the recent recipient of a cornea transplant. While on her way to a doctor’s appointment a man is knocked into the way of a subway train and he loses his arm. Joanna witnesses a black shadow rush towards the man but thinks it is due to some troubles she is having with the transplant.

Joanna is in for a serious shock when she leaves her appointment and the man from the station is there but he isn’t the same man that she had conversed with at the station. He looks evil and there is a black aura around him. There is also a black limb where his human arm used to be. It isn’t until Joanna witnesses several strange events and several more black auras that she starts seriously worrying about what is going on. Who is this person and why is he spreading his blackness like an infection? More importantly, who is going to believe her?

Jeffrey writes a pretty suspenseful tale in the short amount of pages that the book has, only 126 according to my Nook. The only thing that stopped this book from being a B+ or even an A for me was what I felt was an unnecessary rape scene. We don’t know the woman just that the demon possessing the body gets his kicks from “defiling” human women. Thankfully it is one brief scene and then the story moves on.

Overall, Jeffrey does a great job keeping you entertained for a little while without hitting your pocketbook heavily.
(reviewed 47 days after purchase)
Judy Cox reviewed on Feb. 24, 2011

This was a great book to read. It was so quickly paced that it did not take long for me to finish it. This is the first book of Shaun Jeffrey that I have read, but I will be checking out more. It was interesting and scary at the same time. I highly recommend it.
(reviewed 21 days after purchase)
L. A. Wright reviewed on Feb. 17, 2011

Article first published as Book Review:Dead Man's Eye by Shaun Jeffrey on Blogcritics.

After Joanna Raines cornea transplant, she begins to feel hope, the gift of vision from her donor was everything to her. Distortion still blocked her vision but she was continuing with her doctors recommendations, but her vision was still blurry and she was afraid of rejection. It seemed a miracle that she received the transplant after losing her own to Fuchs Corneal Dystrophy. What would she do if her transplant failed? Her fear drove her back to the doctor for a checkup.

As she waited for train, another man, Lincoln Parker, also waiting commiserated with her on the lateness of their particular train. She was having difficulty seeing, getting some halo effect as well as the blurriness. As the man got up and headed to the train, she began to get ready as well. As a stack of luggage fell over it created a chain reaction that caused the man, she had been sitting next to, to fall onto the tracks. As he tried to pull himself out of the way, the train hit him, severing his arm. Joanna’s view of the entire scene was surreal; she could see something shadowy seeping into the body, something dark and creepy, just before the man seemed to come alive again. Was it an effect of her vision, or did she really see something?

After getting confirmation from her doctor that she was doing well, and her eye was coming along fine, she ran into her boyfriend Stephen Cook, also a doctor. As she is speaking with him, they push the man from the train station by her, on a gurney. She again sees the shadow and quizzes Stephen as to what he sees. Stephen does understand, all he sees is a man that lost his arm. She is seeing something else, something dark and disturbing, and yet how can she tell anyone. Who will believe her?

As the shadow begins to take over the consciousness of Lincoln Parker, he becomes a different. Is he still a man, or has he become something more, something dark and deadly, a shadow looking to inhabit the earth again? Can Joanna get someone to believe her before it is too late? Was the gift of the cornea, truly a miracle or was it something more?

In Dead Man’s Eye, Shaun Jeffrey has found an effective form of terror. He has found an effective outlet to create a way to see something that others do not. The story keeps you wondering. Does Joanna really see something, or is she really just adjusting to the new transplant? As people around her begin to die and the shadowing surrounds the newly dead, bringing them back to life, she finds that she is the only one who sees them. Her boyfriend Stephen wants to believe her, but when her friend dies, he turns her over to the police. Only then does he realize that she may truly know something. Can he get her to trust him again, to allow him to help her before it is too late?

This is a good scary story, different and unique. It is fast paced and interesting, with just enough horror to keep you reading, but with a wary eye, making sure the door are locked and the window closed. I really enjoyed the story, but I would have liked to know more about the characters prior to the actual events.

Shaun Jeffrey has put together in interesting scenario explaining the visions. The characters, even without the added depth, are well written, and as sometimes happens in times of great stress, extremely brave in a fool hardy way. If you enjoy spooky, creepy stories, you will enjoy this book. A must have for the spooky aficionado. Shaun Jeffrey is an author to keep an eye on.

This book was reveived as a free e-book from the author. All opinions are my own based off my reading and understanding of the material.
(reviewed 13 days after purchase)
alan woodhouse reviewed on Feb. 17, 2011

Joanna is the recipient of a new cornea, courtesy of a dead priest. But when she starts seeing shadows around certain people, she thinks something has gone wrong. Only it's much worse. What she sees are really the shadowy forms of demons that have infiltrated peoples bodies with the purpose of taking over the world.

I raced through Dead Man's Eye, which is a fast paced novella with excellent characterisation. The story had me on the edge of my seat, and once or twice I nearly fell off. Great story.
(reviewed 29 days after purchase)
Barry Huddleston reviewed on Feb. 11, 2011

“Maybe there was something even worse than a world of darkness.”

It doesn’t take long to get hooked by Shaun Jeffery. The last line of chapter one had me hooked on his brilliant novella.

A young photographer has her career shattered by the loss of her vision. She undergoes a cornea transplant, but begins to see dark shadowy forms. Our young photographer can now see the shadowy form of evil.

This fast-paced novella kept a dark grin on my face throughout the entire ebook. Brilliant!

I give it a sold 4 1/2 shadowy demons out of 5 !
(reviewed 22 days after purchase)
Bec Lewis reviewed on Feb. 8, 2011

This story goes at a cracking pace, so you have to keep reading! Very enjoyable.
(reviewed 34 days after purchase)
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