by James A. Moore
Category: Fiction / Horror
834 pages; ISBN: 1892065665
Rating: 9/10 (Ratings explained)
Reviewer: Harriet Klausner
Three hundred years ago, avarice led to a woman being burned at the stake as a witch. Before dying she cursed the town of Serenity Falls. Over the years, greed has led to adverse happenings to the residents. However, Serenity Falls seems in the midst of a financial renaissance with the reopening of the quarry.
As usual with the three-century old Curse, sinister things accompany the good happenings but once again prove much worse than the positive tidings. The Curse seems reaching the end game as the locals behave weirdly, but if that is not enough to frighten anyone who sees beyond the typical rapacity, two dangerous outsiders have entered the mix. An evil demon-like creature and Jonathan Crowley have arrived with agendas of their own to include killing their visiting rival, but the Curse has other needs for these dueling strangers with the locals caught in the middle of a triangle of terror.
On the surface SERENITY FALLS sounds like Stephen King’s Salem’s Lot, but there is much Moore to the novel than just the rewriting a classic. The story line is loaded with, and an intensifying terror that is difficult to classify as the audience wonders between the Curse and the newcomers as to who is the focus of this peril. Surprisingly for such a large ensemble the residents ensure the audience believes the small hamlet exists and bring life to the threat. Jonathan is an interesting protagonist who seems heroic yet anti-hero as the audience speculates whether he is a savior or the Grim Reaper. His malevolent antagonist adds suspense to a tremendous horror story worthy of the masters.
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