Beneath



When Reporter Cora Mayburn Is Assigned To Cover A Story About A Snake Handling Cult In Rural Appalachia, She Is Dismayed, For The World Of Cruel Fundamentalist Stricture, Repression, Glossolalia, And Abuse Is Something She Has Long Since Put Behind Her In Favor Of A Tolerant Urban Existence But She Accepts The Assignment, Dredging Up Long Buried Memories As She Seeks The TruthAs Cora Begins To Uncover The Secrets Concealed By A Veneer Of Faith And Tradition, Something Ancient And Long Concealed Begins To Awaken What Secrets Do The Townsfolk Know What Might The Handsome Young Pastor Be Hiding What Will Happen When Occulted Horrors Writhe To The Surface, When Pallid And Forgotten Things Rise To Reclaim The Earth Will Cora And The Earth Survive The Answers And Pure Terror Can Only Be Found In One Place BeneathBeneath

Kristi DeMeester is the author of Beneath, published by Word Horde, and Everything That s Underneath by Apex Books Her short fiction has been included in Ellen Datlow s Year s Best Horror Volumes 9 and 11, Year s Best Weird Fiction Volumes 1, 3, and 5, and Stephen Jone s Best New Horror Her short fiction has also appeared in publications such as Black Static, The Dark, Pseudopod, as well as several others In her spare time, she alternates between telling people how to pronounce her last name and how to spell her first.

[Ebook] ↠ Beneath Author Kristi DeMeester – E17streets4all.co.uk
  • Paperback
  • 308 pages
  • Beneath
  • Kristi DeMeester
  • 11 January 2019
  • 193990529X

10 thoughts on “Beneath

  1. says:

    I have enjoyed Kristi DeMeester s short stories immensely With her first novel Beneath there is evidence of her authorial capability allocated throughout the story The novel is highly sexually charged throughout it s telling, with the lines blurred between eroticism and the perversion.The novel s main characters, a young female no nonsense reporter, a priest who wavers between impure thoughts and weakness, a mother and daughter who s highly religious upbringing and marred upbringing comprise I have enjoyed Kristi DeMeester s short stories immensely With her first novel Beneath there is evidence of her authorial capability allocated throughout the story The novel is highly sexually charged throughout it s telling, with the lines blurred between eroticism and the perversion.The novel s main characters, a young female no nonsense reporter, a priest who wavers between impure thoughts and weakness, a mother and daughter who s highly religious upbringing and marred upbringing comprise the majority of the narrative.The priest is the leader of a rattlesnake handling church in the mountains of Georgia The intrepid reporter has been assigned to write a feature article on the church its parishioners and of course it s snakes The novel takes place somewhere in the nineteen eighties and slowly exposes the past and history of the main characters, most of that history is quite intense For a special treat Ms DeMeester does a reading of the first two chapters on the radio podcast of The Outer Dark at 01 15 04, also of note is the reading given by Anya Martin, can be found here This copy arrived with a book plate signed by Kristi DeMeester

  2. says:

    4.5Beneath deserves to be on your list of horror books to read sooner, rather than later I enjoyed every minute of this ride This is my first Kristi DeMeester but it will not be my last I hope she writessick reads And this book is sick.Dark and disturbing, the prose sort of washes over you like briny, brackish water and leaves you feeling unsettled and dirty at the end of the day.The blurb on the back of the back of the book gives you a great, surface level capture of what this story is 4.5Beneath deserves to be on your list of horror books to read sooner, rather than later I enjoyed every minute of this ride This is my first Kristi DeMeester but it will not be my last I hope she writessick reads And this book is sick.Dark and disturbing, the prose sort of washes over you like briny, brackish water and leaves you feeling unsettled and dirty at the end of the day.The blurb on the back of the back of the book gives you a great, surface level capture of what this story is about but it keeps its secrets and so I will too Just know, you will plumb the depths of a very dark place before this book is over.I really enjoyed our protagonist Cora a journalist with a sensitive past who is sent on an assignment to cover a story about a cult.She meets a preacher man , Michael who, despite all his flaws, I couldn t help being invested in his character and wanting him to push through to the end.DeMeester is masterful at setting, character development and building suspense by the time the story climaxes, you re ready for it Even though the plot feels a little familiar the evil DeMeester develops is disgusting and horrifying Plenty of times, the graphic, vivid detail was so stomach turning and frightening, I found myself trying to skim over the descriptions but I forced myself to read every yucky word, Ha I loved it My only smallish complaint was that ending It didn t sit right with me but I m not going to tell you why Too spoilery Just add this book to your horror stack for Fall You won t regret it

  3. says:

    4.5 Stars Video Review is a strong debut horror novel filled with creepy creatures and nasty people Clearly, Demeester has a dark and twisted imagination The prose in this novel is absolutely fantastic, with tightly written descriptions and disturbing imagery This novel is unapologetic in its attempts to make readers uncomfortable.Given the synopsis, readers may expect the snake handling to play a large role in the story Yet very little of the plot actual 4.5 Stars Video Review is a strong debut horror novel filled with creepy creatures and nasty people Clearly, Demeester has a dark and twisted imagination The prose in this novel is absolutely fantastic, with tightly written descriptions and disturbing imagery This novel is unapologetic in its attempts to make readers uncomfortable.Given the synopsis, readers may expect the snake handling to play a large role in the story Yet very little of the plot actually takes place within the evangelical church Instead, the journalist investigation simply sets up the story, which quickly takes off into a supernatural tale of ancient monsters.This is the kind of horror story that will have crossover appeal for thriller readers looking to get into the genre This novel was just about the perfect length Switching perspectives between a handful of characters, each chapter propels the story forward In places, the narrative choices felt a bit too passive, telling the horror, rather than showing it to the reader Given the ambiguous nature of the horror, certain scenes could have benefited fromdetailed descriptions In terms of scariness, this book utilizes several different avenues to terrify and delight readers The most predominant form of the horror takes the form of the supernatural creatures These ambiguous Lovecraftian monsters are the creation of the author s mind and will appeal most to readers who are readily able to suspend their disbelief The story also has elements of psychological horror with a possible possession situation The creepiest scenes in this novel were easily the ones involving the snakes Those vivid descriptions of the slithering snakes will surely make readers skin crawl Drawing from real life horror, the sexual abuse in this novel make the story evendisturbing Sensitive readers should be aware that this book contains some very sexually explicit content The author does not shy away from the dark sides of humanity and pushes these sexual scenes as far as they need to go The resulting narrative is intentionally uncomfortable to read Please be warned that this book will very be triggering for victims of sexual abuse In a male dominated genre, this book offers a much needed female voice to horror In the hands of another author, this triggering subject matter in this novel could be problematic or offenses Yet, Demeester masterfully weaves sensitive themes of sexuality, motherhood and femininity into her narrative in a provocative and challenging manner At times, the thematic elements are a bit heavy handed, with snakes symbolizing phallic objects Yet, in the scope of the story, these thematic elements work Demeester has an incredible knack for writing cutthroat scenes with despicable people The characters are wonderfully unlikable and, in certain cases, downright vile Yet none of these people are depicted as completely black or white Instead, even the worst offenders are depicted as complex, morally gray characters.Demeester has some serious favourite author potential She writes the kinds of stories that I absolutely love to read In her debut novel, she dares to expose the dark ideas that exists within her mind I look forward to whatever she chooses to write next.I requested this book from the Word Horde after I read her fantastic short story YesNoGoodbye in an anthology collection called Tales from a Talking Board

  4. says:

    And where are the angels to guard Where s the God of men and children VNV Nation Serial KillerDo you ever feel like a book was written just for you Like, there s some unspoken connection between you and the author, and somehow, despite not knowing each other, you share a kinship and because of that kinship, the book they wrote has some sort of special resonance with you, and you re like yeah, I m right there with you Like they somehow heard the thoughts in your head and managed to convert And where are the angels to guard Where s the God of men and children VNV Nation Serial KillerDo you ever feel like a book was written just for you Like, there s some unspoken connection between you and the author, and somehow, despite not knowing each other, you share a kinship and because of that kinship, the book they wrote has some sort of special resonance with you, and you re like yeah, I m right there with you Like they somehow heard the thoughts in your head and managed to convert those thoughts into a wonderful narrative Like you d see each other across a crowded room, even as strangers, and be like yep, I totally understand THAT person.Yeah, me either Because, dude, that would just be super weird and creepy and stalkerish And I don t do creepy OR stalkerish alas, I really can t help the weird part That s the kind of shit that restraining orders are made of you psycho So knock that unhealthy mix of projecting and paparazzi behavior right the hell off, cuz you re making the rest of us normal fans look bad Sheesh But that said, if I WAS feeling somewhat creepy and stalkerish, I do believe that Kristi DeMeester and I would likely get along famously Like maybe we share some of the same kind of damage or messed up ways of thinking Honestly, I d just want to buy her a High West whiskey, say nicely done chica , and then be on my merry and messed up way Because, when it comes right down to it, Beneath is my kind of book Dark, twisted, and altogether bleak, when I read horror this is the kind of book I m generally seeking Something that pulls no punches Something that doesn t veer around awful things, even if they are happening to good people Something that just tells the bloody story, convention be damned And Beneath does that for me Oh, and don t let the somewhat YA looking cover fool you this book has chops, and children are definitely not allowed My mother always said there were things in this world that were blacker than hell As with all of my reviews, I will attempt to keep spoilers to a minimum Whether a book is full of twists and turns or not, going in without preconceived notions almost always results in afulfilling experience And like any good horror novel, Beneath should be experienced unfiltered, unspoiled, and fresh Like produce And bread And bourbon Definitely like bourbon Mmmmm bourbon Oh, sorry, I ll get back on track So yeah, if it s not mentioned in the official book synopsis, I will do my level best to avoid mentioning it here.Or she could climb into the car and drive back to the hotel, maybe find a liquor store on the way there, pour herself four fingers of bourbon and wait for the alcohol to settle over her like a coat.So what do we get from Beneath Well, it s a straight up horror tale, told in third person from multiple viewpoints, and weighs in at 320 pages I do find the cover a little misleading as much as I like it, I don t feel it does the content justice This book is definitely NSFK not safe for kids , but the cover does look like it belongsto a YA novel than this particular beast And yes, I know, never judge a book by its cover and all that Except we still all do But enough about all that What about the content under the cover In that tiny, dark closet, when Mr Burress had asked her to close her eyes and to open her mouth so he could see her teeth, she had come to understand that men could be so, so much worse than the devil.Honestly, Beneath is a pretty effective horror tale It s mostly a self contained story, with the vast majority of the action taking place in one little Appalachian town The 80 s setting really helps keep the story a little tenser than modern tales, as characters have to do without cellphones and all their inherent benefits While in modern times an interview could take place over email or skype, our main protagonist Cora actually has to head to Hensley, PA to get her story There are no easy solutions to Google, nobody available for help at the drop of a hat, and there s no way to get a huge story out to the masses in an easy manner Not that there aren t good modern horror stories, as there certainly are, but I think there sof an edge to stories when people in peril don t have ready access to super helpful technology And, even though the 80 s craze is in full effect, unlike some of the other books I ve read taking place in that neon decade, Kristi DeMeester doesn t go overboard with the callbacks Aside from a mention or two about cassette tapes and one or two pop culture references, this story could almost as easy have taken place in the late seventies or early nineties Judas Priest Devil music, Cora said and lifted an eyebrow.Michael laughed Perfect As I mentioned earlier, this is a multi POV affair We actually get two main characters, although a couple of the side characters get a few decently meaty chapters at times But of the two primary protagonists, journalist Cora Mayburn gets a bitpage time than Pastor Michael Wayne Which is just as well, as she s a much easier character to follow for me anyways Blunt, intrepid, and somewhat damaged, she s the kind of protagonist that I gravitate towards I always prefer the characters with a bit of baggage, but who still try to do the right thing despite their issues The imperfect characters with the strong moral compass Maybe I see some of myself in them, or maybe they are justengaging in generaleither way, they get me every time I also like that she s essentially a whirlwind when she comes to Hensley Outspoken and opinionated, she s everything the ladies of Hensley are not Pastor Wayne, on the other hand, was a difficult character for me to root for Some of that is because he is very nearly the wettest of wet blankets, and the rest of it needs to stay under wraps in order to avoid spoilers Needless to say, even in the rare moments when I commiserated with him, I still didn t care for him very much.In her mind, she d imagined a corpulent, bulbous eyed hellfire and damnation minister who was old enough to fart dust.The supporting characters are rather well realized, if only sporadically used Both Ruth McDowell and her daughter Leah, residents of Hensley with some kind of ties to the crazy happenings, have pretty significant parts to play within the story, but don t necessarily make many appearances We also get a smattering of other viewpoints at various intervals, which helps flesh out the tale a bit, providing insight to other events or helping to set up certain plot points.The antagonists are actually pretty well thought out, and thoroughly icky The primary villain is an ancient terror come back to life, and that can sometimes be hit or miss, but it works pretty well here Cora and Michael have several run ins with various beasties and nasties over the course of the book, and they are just the right amount of creepy That said, the threat to our protagonists is stillmental than physical, as the villains have many ways of invading thoughts and dreams, which is something that our heroes have little defense against The only thing I m not completely certain of is why now with the bad guys There were certain things that transpired that basically enabled them into our world, but I can t recall if there was a reason why those things had to happen with these specific characters.But isn t this what it meant to be a mother To give of your body so that the children might thrive even if you weakened While not as graphic as books by Richard Laymon, Edward Lee, and Jack Ketchum, Beneath is definitely cut from the same cloth, and would have been a perfect fit alongside those other juggernauts of sex fueled horror in their heyday We also get a pretty solid female perspective to all the darkness and perversion, and that s a nice change of pace While not as sexually graphic as the aforementioned authors, there s some pretty disturbing things taking place here Some of these things are fiction, while others are firmly rooted in the real, making them all thehorrific Did I mention this book isn t for kids There s blood aplenty, and all sorts of body horror shenanigans to make your skin crawl And even though it s not overly graphic in the sexy department, that doesn t mean it s not effective I think that many authors rely far too heavily on shock to try and sell a story Kristi DeMeester doesn t need to do that she can still bring the ick factor while relyingon prose and vivid descriptions rather than blunt force trauma And hey, sometimes blunt force trauma is what is needed I m not saying shock is awful it s just that sometimes I wantMore craft, less crass, as it were.To love was pain, and she embraced it fully, took the hurt into herself like vapor.For those with less than robust constitutions, let s be clearthis book is pretty harsh in its treatment of children, and most of the parenting is just plain awful I don t know if Kristi DeMeester had a rough childhood, or if she just knows that familial drama and child endangerment give that extra zest to an already brutal tale, but she really goes for the gusto when it comes to pain and betrayal Kids suffer in this book, and as a father I occasionally found myself cringing Also, it must be noted that religion isn t painted in a flattering light here Likeat all There s two major examples of this with men in religious power, and then many of the background characters are judgmental, hypocritical, and not very charitable Personally, I didn t have any problems with the depictions here, but depending on your level of faith and secureness within that faith , your mileage may vary That s how faith worked To believe in something unbelievable to keep yourself from the threshold of despair.Honestly, my only real problem with the book was the ending But that s not terribly uncommon I think that most books with great ideas seem to struggle with how to wrap everything up And I 100% get it Tying everything together in an effective cohesive whole can be daunting But I just didn t feel the gut punch that I should have felt at the end of Beneath I will give props for it not ending on the note that most books would have defaulted with, as Beneath absolutely does take the path less travelled with the finale I just wantedoomph We have action escapes, grit determination, bloody and perverted trials tribulations and then those things kind of fall away and the book just stops It s like a boxer winning a fight with a soft jab instead of an uppercut it works, it s just not something that will awe you.On the quality side, I only noticed a handful of instances where there were mistakes in the book, mostly with a character s name In one specific instance, a mother s name is used instead of her daughter s, but in the context of the narrative the mistake doesn t cause any problems There were only one or two typos that I found All in all, the editing was solid.So yeah, Beneath is a solid read for sure, and I now want to check out other titles by Kristi DeMeester It s been a minute since a I read a really disturbing horror story, and this one fit the bill rather nicely If you don t mind a little sleaze and sadness with your horror, then you should definitely check this one out

  5. says:

    A snake handling religion located in a small church in an even smaller backwoods town A reporter with a dark history surrounding the church of her childhood A mother and daughter enveloped in a slinking, slithery darkness with ties to horrors that aren t as removed from the everyday world as we d like to think Beneath boasts a dark beauty and DeMeester s talent lies in her descriptive writing and her world building when it comes to this novel The characters are well developed, and some of th A snake handling religion located in a small church in an even smaller backwoods town A reporter with a dark history surrounding the church of her childhood A mother and daughter enveloped in a slinking, slithery darkness with ties to horrors that aren t as removed from the everyday world as we d like to think Beneath boasts a dark beauty and DeMeester s talent lies in her descriptive writing and her world building when it comes to this novel The characters are well developed, and some of the most disturbing scenes are written with a grace and a believability that left me feeling cringe y for days to follow I may rethink my gardening habits from now on The last section or so moved a little too hurriedly, and the ending left me wanting just a bitThe interactions between two of the main characters no spoilers here were a tad confusing Overall, I truly enjoyed this book I m picking up her collection, Everything Underneath, soon and I cannot wait to see what she comes up with next

  6. says:

    Beneath is one heck of a book, for the most part I ll state up front that the ending didn t quite work for me, and it felt as if DeMeester wasn t sure how to wrap up the events of her story in a satisfying way This is a slow burn horror book, but where there should have been a big finale, the story disappointingly fizzles out and slowly fades away I would also advise that this very much a me issues, and might not be a you issue, so please don t let that deter you Read it and judge for yo Beneath is one heck of a book, for the most part I ll state up front that the ending didn t quite work for me, and it felt as if DeMeester wasn t sure how to wrap up the events of her story in a satisfying way This is a slow burn horror book, but where there should have been a big finale, the story disappointingly fizzles out and slowly fades away I would also advise that this very much a me issues, and might not be a you issue, so please don t let that deter you Read it and judge for yourself The first 3 4 of Beneath are absolutely terrific I really dug the atmosphere DeMeester conjures with her cult of Appalachian snake handlers and the investigative reporter, Cora, sent on assignment to dig up some dirt on these backwoods folks and their sincerely held religious belief that poisonous snakes should bite small children to see if God will deem them worthy of saving Cora is a dogged journalist, but also deeply scarred by her mother s religiosity and her youth In the opening pages, DeMeester lays out a history of Cora s victimization at the hands of a pedophile priest This history first compels her to stay far, far away from the assignment, until she s finally goaded into taking the story from her editor Once in the small mountain town, she notices hints that Father Michael is not the charismatic preacher he plays at, and recognizes in him similar pedophiliac traits as the abuser of her youth When he stares a little too longingly at one of his parishioners, a young girl named Laura, Cora promises to ruin Michael and expose his cult for what it is.All of this is merely prologue, though, for a dark and squirming horror story that pushes Beneath into some very different material than what I had expected at the outlay While the war of wills between Cora and Michael could have been compelling on its own, the author ups the ante even further with the inclusion of a supernatural menace, an evil that lurks buried in the earth itself The plots takes a wonderfully realized twist that good and truly sank its fangs into me, and I was totally captivated.DeMeester hit some absolutely terrific highs, even as she takes a quiet approach to unraveling the frights There s plenty of action, but the story itself is never bombastic The subdued approach is what makes Beneath so effective and infecting At least, for me, right up until the end Beneath ultimately falls into a familiar trap You know the one You ve probably seen it a thousand times in any given James Bond movie The bad guys have the heroes cornered, and it wouldn t take hardly anything at all to kill them and win the day And yet, inexplicably, for no good reason at all, the good guys get a pass and are allowed to just walk away Something similar happens here in the push toward the grand finale, and I kept scratching my head as to why it was allowed It s an easy out, and I can t think of one good reason why it should have happened the way it did Still, the story continues to chug along for a few chapters , mostly so the bad guys can continue to play their mind games for a little while longer But instead of giving us a satisfying closure, DeMeester again goes for those quiet somber tones, which has worked so well for the rest of the book but suddenly falls flat in its final pages While the story kept ramping up and up and up, I kept wondering how the heck it was all going to resolve And well, frankly, it doesn t There is a resolution, yes, but the book mostly just ends, with the story itself very much an ouroborus I get the metaphors and character arcs that DeMeester was aiming for, but it just didn t satisfy me Granted, as far as ending go, it works, but it isn t satisfying.Ratings wise, I m really very torn on how to score this one damn you, Goodreads, for not allowing 1 2 stars This book was very much a 4 star title for me, right up until the end, which knocked it down a bit Taken on a whole, though, I can t stomach giving this book only 3 stars, because I liked it quite a great dealthan that Call it 3.75, rounded up to 4 then Beneath is definitely recommended, even if I have some reservations, and I ll certainly be on the lookout forof Kristi DeMeester s work in the future Note I received an advanced copy of this title from the publisher, Word Horde

  7. says:

    4.5 Stars.My friend Sadie is a horror nut like me, and every once in a while she will message me and say you need this Not only does she love horror, but she loves pretty much all of the same things that I love, so if Sadie says I need something, I definitely need it This is one that she told me I needed.I bought it, and like a lot of the books I buy it got buried under piles of other books that arrived shortly after and I forgot about it Not entirely, though I knew I wanted to read DeMees 4.5 Stars.My friend Sadie is a horror nut like me, and every once in a while she will message me and say you need this Not only does she love horror, but she loves pretty much all of the same things that I love, so if Sadie says I need something, I definitely need it This is one that she told me I needed.I bought it, and like a lot of the books I buy it got buried under piles of other books that arrived shortly after and I forgot about it Not entirely, though I knew I wanted to read DeMeester, I just hadn t gotten around to it yet Finally, this month gave me the perfect opportunity I like to do picture challenges on Instagram, and this month a bunch of my friends are doing a Ladies of Horror Fiction challenge I decided that not only was I going to do the photo challenge, but I was going to challenge myself to read mostly women the entire month of August Beneath went into the pile, and I finally picked it up.Long story short, I bought it on a recommendation and knew nothing about the story I never read a book s blurb until right before I read the book, so up until a few days ago I had no clue what this story is about On the surface it s about a reporter from Atlanta who goes to Hensley, North Carolina to cover a story about a snake handling cult Cora has a haunted past, and the last thing she wants is to go anywhere near religion, but she knows this is a good story, so she agrees to take the assignment Once she arrives in Hensley dark forces have already set their plans in motion, and Cora ends up facing muchthan a group of snake worshipping fanatics.I loved this story The two main characters, Cora and Hensley s preacher Michael, are flawed people with complicated pasts However, they are both characters that you find yourself rooting for, perhaps because they are flawed and in that sensehuman and relatable DeMeester takes this story to places that I never expected, and that is always a treat I took off a half of a star basically because I felt as if the ending didn t quite fit the rest of the story I ve read other reviewers who said the same thing, and I definitely agree It felt abrupt However, I really enjoyed this novel and highly recommend it I can t wait to readfrom DeMeester

  8. says:

    Devastatingly bleak novel that ratchets up the tension and terror page by page and never relents Snake cults, religious horror, the horrors of organized religion, the weakness of the flesh, the pleasure and the price of sin, and a haunting conclusion combine to form one unforgettable beast Compulsively readable, with smooth, fluid prose, and filled with a cast of truly realistic and fully realized characters Highly recommended to weird and horror fans who thrive in dark places, both geographi Devastatingly bleak novel that ratchets up the tension and terror page by page and never relents Snake cults, religious horror, the horrors of organized religion, the weakness of the flesh, the pleasure and the price of sin, and a haunting conclusion combine to form one unforgettable beast Compulsively readable, with smooth, fluid prose, and filled with a cast of truly realistic and fully realized characters Highly recommended to weird and horror fans who thrive in dark places, both geographically and psychologically

  9. says:

    Beneath is an apocalyptic novel involving evangelicals and snake handling Several characters were only children of single mothers who I found easy to relate to I m not sure what else I could add.This is a great first published novel a first rate horror novel and I look forward to seeing what Kristi DeMeester writes in the future In the meantime, I m going to dig into her first story collection Everything That s Underneath A Collection of Weird and Horror Tales Beneath is an apocalyptic novel involving evangelicals and snake handling Several characters were only children of single mothers who I found easy to relate to I m not sure what else I could add.This is a great first published novel a first rate horror novel and I look forward to seeing what Kristi DeMeester writes in the future In the meantime, I m going to dig into her first story collection Everything That s Underneath A Collection of Weird and Horror Tales

  10. says:

    Unfortunately, I finished reading this literally the day before I went into emergency surgery, so there goes any notion of my penning an actually insightful review That said, I wanted to at least note my reading of it down, and say a few things, probablypoorly than I would were I in less pain or on less medication I m a fan of Kristi DeMeester and of Word Horde, and this novel got sold to me on the strength of the horror novel about snake handling logline, as well as my hearing a bit o Unfortunately, I finished reading this literally the day before I went into emergency surgery, so there goes any notion of my penning an actually insightful review That said, I wanted to at least note my reading of it down, and say a few things, probablypoorly than I would were I in less pain or on less medication I m a fan of Kristi DeMeester and of Word Horde, and this novel got sold to me on the strength of the horror novel about snake handling logline, as well as my hearing a bit of the beginning read aloud at the Outer Dark Symposium on the Greater Weird earlier this year.For an idea of what you re getting into, think Salem s Lot by way of Lair of the White Worm, while at once maybeintimate and apocalyptic than either of them The snake handling certainly plays a big role in the story, but not necessarily in the ways that you might expect, and there are plenty of crawly monsters before all is said and done If I had a complaint, it s that the book frequently made use of a trick where it would tell a similar scene through several different points of view, leading up to what felt like a cliffhanger before going back and taking the same route but from a different angle Which is not a problem in itself there were times when it was an extremely effective way of building tension, but other times it didn t always work quite as well.I m afraid this isn t a very satisfying review for what was, after all, a very satisfying book If you want a solid small town horror story that takes you some places you probably weren t expecting, you could do a whole lot worse

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