by Nick Cutter
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From electrifying horror author Nick Cutter comes a haunting new novel, reminiscent of Cormac McCarthy's Blood Meridian and Stephen King’s It, in which a trio of mismatched mercenaries is hired by a young woman for a deceptively simple task: check in on her nephew, who may have been taken against his will to a remote New Mexico backwoods settlement called Little Heaven. Shortly after they arrive, things begin to turn ominous. Stirrings in the woods and over the treetops—the brooding shape of a monolith known as the Black Rock casts its terrible pall. Paranoia and distrust grips the settlement. The escape routes are gradually cut off as events spiral towards madness. Hell—or the closest thing to it—invades Little Heaven. The remaining occupants are forced to take a stand and fight back, but whatever has cast its dark eye on Little Heaven is now marshaling its powers...and it wants them all.
Nick Cutter is an author whose books adorn my bookshelf. I devoured The Troop and The Deep and was anxious to begin Little Heaven. While it wasn’t without flaw’s fans of old school horror will find themselves entertained.
“Shall we begin?”
- The PREMISE!! In the 1960s, three bounty hunter crosshairs during their jobs. Things get crazy when one actively tries to kill another, but they band together when things get tough and end up forming an odd partnership. They end up taking a case to infiltrate a religious cult known as Little Heaven in a remote jungle location in New Mexico. This is when some weird supernatural shit goes down; that will have you squirming, thinking of the Slim Man and calling for your mommy in the middle of the night. Cutter is the king of gore, and this tale includes bugs, animal torture, and religious fanatics. I recommend reading on an empty stomach.
- The trio of characters Minny, Shug, and Eb, were fascinating themselves. They are a rough bunch as one would expect from bounty hunters, but Cutter does a splendid job of showcasing their strengths and weaknesses. While I wouldn’t want to hang with the lot, I respected them.
- The tale is told both in the present (1980’s) and past (1960’s) as we learn about what happened in Little Heaven and why this group is returning there. It is a well-spun tale that keeps you guessing and your palms sweating. The past stories were skillfully woven taking us to the Korean War, Minny’s childhood and more. Three-fourths of the tale is spent in the past before we come to our climatic present.
- Little Heaven is a settlement established by religious cult leader ‘Prophet’ Reverend Amos Flesher. He and his followers have set up a utopia away from the sins of sixties society. The attention to detail surround the camp, jungle and the strange happens within this camp were brilliantly told.
- Fans of Lovecraft and old school horror like King’s earlier works will love the edge of your seat fear that Cutter presents. Cutter delivers on the gore, and his tales are not meant for the squeamish.
- The “Big Bad” evil provided a pied piper horror with religious undertones.
- Secondary characters from Ellen, Fisher and some children offered insight into twisted events and the main characters.
- Black and white illustrations in this book added to the horror.
- Unlike the Troop and the Deep, I didn’t slip into the story as easily. I finally slipped in at around 40% and as usual, Cutter had me glued to my eReader and panting in horror.
- The “Big Bad” was hard to formulate and apparently it was for Cutter too. He used language that forced the reader to fill in the blanks. Generally, I like these classic horror tactics, but in his attempts to articulate the sheer unspeakable horror that was witnessed the story suffered from a feeling of repetitiveness.
- As much as I loved time spent in the past, I would have liked thing shortened up in Little Heaven to allow for more time in the present (the 1980’s) and the climatic ending. The present day story suffered because of this, and while the ending was good I believe it could have been more.
Little Heaven will send chills down your spine. I recommend Nick Cutter to fans of Stephen King, H.P. Lovecraft, and Clive Barker.Shall we begin? Little Heaven by Nick Cutter Leave the lights on. Click To Tweet