War Demons [Silver Empire affiliate link] is the veteran’s take on supernatural horror. Sometimes we casually refer to the men who come back from war suffering from PTSD and survivor’s guilt as demon-haunted; but for Michael Alexander it is anything but a metaphor.
We now come to the third book covering similar territory I have read recently. I don’t often end up reading lots of similar books together in succession, so I can compare and contrast these. War Demons is perhaps in some ways inbetween Fade and Hell Spawn in mood. Like Fade, the emphasis is on punching the devil in the face, but like Hell Spawn, humans have nearly no ability to resist the powers of evil absent prayer. But that doesn’t stop Michael from trying.
Fortunately for Michael, he has a lot of friends who are willing to stick with him. Which is good, since he is in way over his head and cannot do it alone. This applies to his personal life just as much as the supernatural conspiracy that he trips into. Like many veterans of the global war on terror, Michael comes home to find that he doesn’t have much in common with other young men and women of his age.
Michael is only a few years older than most of his classmates, but war changed him in ways that tend to pull him away from others. Like many soldiers, Michael picked up a heavy drinking habit composed of equal parts boredom and a need to escape his memories, even if just for a little while. Survivor’s guilt is common in veterans too, but Michael has a double dose, haunted not only by his friends who never came home, but also the death of his fiance in the World Trade Center on 9/11.
Michael’s support network pulls him through. His not-quite-father-in-law Jim, his friend Peter at the dojo, a couple of nerds George and Denzel, all of them stick by him even when stuff starts getting weird. The camaraderie was the best part of the book for me. When everything is crazy, you need something to cling to, and for Michael, that is the strength of his friendships.
If you are in the market for a Catholic action horror novel, give War Demons a try. It has its own flavor that you might enjoy.
I received this book from the publisher for free. Silver Empire books are available directly through the publisher, so I have linked to their online store.
Silver Empire also features a book club [Silver Empire affiliate link], with monthly and annual plans, that allows one book each month.
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