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Posted April 10, 2013
I received this ebook through Early Reviewers. Overall I found i
I received this ebook through Early Reviewers. Overall I found it to be a fast read. Drawing heavily on Lovecraft's Old Ones mythos, the story basically played out as a good versus evil story. Two strangers arrive in a small town, one a preacher who is actually an immortal creature working to spread chaos and violence, as he slowly gains enough power to open the way to Earth for the Old Ones to enter. He slowly brainwashes the populace, feeding off of the escalating violence and hostility as neighbours and family turn on each other with horrific results. John Root, a traveler who collects folktales and myths and is the latest in a family line whose job it is to seek out and fight evil like the creature masquerading as a preacher. He knows a mishmash of herbal medicine and magic and the author provides him with some interesting aspects such as a black medicine bag that is more of a tunnel to somewhere else than just a carrying case.
One thing that didn't ring true for me was that Cyrus Christian was known by other names such as Loki, Anansi, Trickster, etc. Yes, those are gods of chaos and mischief, but I don't see them as evil in the way that Cyrus Christian was portrayed, nor could I see them working to aid the Old Ones. It's a small point but it did bother me whenever those other names were used. I just felt it was not an accurate representation of Tricksters, but taken much beyond into something that was completely evil and horrific.
The action moved quickly and the atmosphere of evil was well described but I felt like we were barely scratching the surface and that it might've been helpful, especially for those who are not familiar with Lovecraft, to have provided more background and detail of the Old Ones and this seemingly eternal battle between Root and his adversary, who we learn can't be killed. At times I felt that the town violence went a little over the top, especially when after it died down people just rationaized all that had happened and blamed it on the heat or electrical ions and moved on. I doubt that the kind of violence on the scale described could happen and that people could move forward afterwards or rationalize it in any way. That just felt a little too easy and didn't ring true. It began to feel that no matter what eventually happened, there had been so much damage to the people in the town that they would never be able to move back to a normal place after it.
I would probably recommend this book to anyone who enjoys horror and Lovecraft. It's a fast and somewhat enjoyable read if you suspend disbelief and just ride along with the story. It's not the best horror I've read and there isn't much that is new or creative but I did find myself wanting to keep reading to see what would happen and I did like the John Root character. If the author decided to make it into a series I would probably give a second book a try, especially if the author decided to dig a little deeper into John and his family line and there was some progression rather than just a repeat using the same basic story with just a different town.
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