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Saturday, September 13, 2014

{Book Review} FAMINE: Book One of the Apocalyptics

Book Title: Famine: Book One of the Apocalyptics
Author: Monica Enderle Pierce
Publisher: Stalking Fiction
Publishing Date: April 2014
Length: 411 pages
Source: KindleUnlimited

The fate of every soul rests upon his shoulders. His fate rests in the hands of a troubled, young girl.

It’s 1895—the cusp of the Victorian and Edwardian eras—and Bartholomew Pelletier is a gentleman and a warrior. For fifteen centuries he’s endured the depraved appetite of Famine—one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse—as she’s consumed his strength and sought to unite with her fellow Horsemen. But now Bartholomew’s chance to imprison her has appeared—in the form of his young ward Matilde.

Chosen to wield the immeasurable power of the Catcher—the one entity that can capture the escaped Horsemen—Matilde is a distrustful child from an abusive and impoverished home. She must be hidden from Famine as she grows strong, learns to fight, and reaches adulthood. But Bartholomew faces a terrible act: For Matilde to become the immortal Catcher, he must gain her trust, and then he must end her life.

By any means necessary, Bartholomew intends to conquer this enemy, but is he willing to sacrifice the one person he loves in order to save mankind?

Famine is the first novel in a four-book, dark fantasy series. It contains graphic violence, strong language, and sexual content and is intended for mature readers.


omfg it ends there?!?! gsyhxgfdsdhjvcfuknxsrol review to come. Jesus. fuck. I need more now! argh

Read through the KindleUnlimited program, so no idea if this shows up as a verified purchase or not.

Um, WOW! So, one of my boyfriend's obsessions is the lore and myth behind the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. While I've read a few  books where they are the main characters or the main villain, my interest in the lore didn't really peak until he started telling me all about them. Passionate excitement about the lore got me going, I must admit.  And I am SO glad it did. While FAMINE is a book I would've picked up anyway, I was more eager to do so because of this new fascination with the horsemen.

Holy. Wow.

First, I send you to my little statement above all the asterisks. (Edited for amazon review due to people's delicate sensibilities and inability to handle curse words.)

Yes, this book leaves you JUST LIKE THAT. Precipice and everything as the characters are looking down over a cliff.

Monica Enderle Pierce's writing immediately sucked me in. Without seeming like she was telling me every little detail of the scene, I indeed got a full picture, so vivid I could practically smell the squalor coming out of Matilde's miserable apartment in the Sixth Ward. My curiosity was held firmly by the author as she brings Bartholomew to Matilde by way of the murder of crows, beasts he depends on and loathes at the same time.

Bartholomew has been searching for 1500 years for a vessel like Matilde. Unfortunately for her, this means that so has Famine and her cronies. Bartholomew (remind me never to name a kid or a dog that; I keep mistyping it) goes by Monsieur to protect his identity. Matilde only knows him as Monsieur despite her constant attempts to uncover who he is. If no one knows his full name and only knows him as Monsieur, then Famine has less of a chance of finding them while they are on the run.

Pierce does a wonderful job of story-telling. From the beginning, you know who Famine is, that Monsieur is somehow enslaved by her, and that the Catcher wants Matilde. But you don't quite know the details and it's parceled out to you in delicious chomps.

It's wonderful watching the relationship develop between Monsieur & Matilde, to see Mr Vernon & Mrs Henderson utterly accept Monsieur as he is and keep him ensconced in humanity.

And I had to love listening to Monsieur as he tells Matilde things like:
"Hell and heaven are concepts created by men to frighten parishioners . . . because fear is profitable and faith has become a business. Frightened people will pay to have their sins absolved." He'd found deterioration in all of God's houses.

I care nothing for the fabrications of that book. Animals possess souls, and they can and do seek revenge.

He remarks on organized religion and teachings like this a couple of times and I kinda pumped my fist in the air with a FINALLY! YES! He isn't atheist, of course, as his fate is entwined with the Horseman and God's will. There is a God and there are the Horsemen and there is the Catcher, and the Beacon, and the Guardian, but no there aren't winged babies and this heaven/hell crap. I thought that was wonderful and it endeared Monsieur to me even more that he is willing to tell this to a child in such a matter of fact way.

This book DOES evoke emotion. You think you're just happy getting the tale, but Pierce writes Matilde so appropriate for her age as she grows from an 8 year old to a pre-teen to an adolescent on the cusp of womanhood. While some readers may get annoyed with Monsieur, I found myself snarling at a petulant effing teenager who was grating on my nerves for her lack of respect, tone of voice, and utter lack of gratitude towards a man who, while he may not be forthcoming with hugs, took her out of the slums and is raising her to be a lady of means. While he had selfish reasons, too, and the pull of the Catcher, and of course Matilde will never have a normal life, he is caring for her, teaching her, arming her for her fate. So yeah, the teenage years bugged the hell out of me.

While I might say it often when I read a good book, I know that this one is one that will stick with me and I'll be turning over and over in my head as I wait for the next installment. I can only hope that Monica Enderle Pierce is a fast writer. And I hope it's a short series of books of this length that totally enthrall and mesmerize you. While she could stretch it out to the end of days, I'm hoping that is not the case and I will soon be treated to the ending of this story. I would love to meet some of the contacts, see how Thomas Green is doing, and what role the Greens will have to play.

I hope I didn't give you any spoilers and I hope you do read this. It was wonderfully crafted! And now I need to order a print copy as I definitely need to reread this one.

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