Age of Satan – James Lovegrove
Release Date: February 14th, 2013
Age Group: Adult
Source: Received from the publisher in excange for an honest review.
It’s not just gods who answer prayers in Lovegrove’s Pantheon series…
In another e-novella exclusive from Solaris, James Lovegrove adds to his New York Times bestselling Pantheon series – which has sold over 100,000 copies worldwide – where gods are made real and men have to contend with their rule.
The latest stand-alone title in this action-packed military SF series brings you a world where Lucifer is all too real and after an ill-judged cry for help, one man is caught up in the morning star’s machinations.
1968. Guy Lucas, son a murdered British diplomat, is sent to an old-fashioned boarding school, where he is bullied and abused. A fellow student persuades him to perform a black mass and plead with Satan to intervene, with horrific consequences. For the next ten years, the shadow of Satan is cast across his life; he flees, across the sea and into obscurity, but tragedy follows him. Eventually, he must confront the Devil, and learn the truth about himself…
Lovegrove takes his ‘godpunk’ series to its next logical next step in a sinister new e-novella that will delight readers of the Pantheon series as well as fans of classic films such as The Omen and The Exorcist.
“Age of Satan” was in no way how I expected it to be. It is, for the most part, a rather depressing story and looking back on it, it wasn’t really my thing.
Guy, after years of living abroad, is put in a boarding school in England after his father died in an execution in Vietnam (we’re in the sixties). The three school bullies decide Guy would be a perfect next victim and make his life a living hell. Their previous victim, Milward, wants to help and instead of praying to God to stop the bullies, drags Guy along and makes him help with a satanic ritual.
After that Guy is certain he is claimed by Satan and blames every horrible event in his life (and there are quite a few) to this connection.
There are some rather grim scenes described throughout the book and even though I’m a fan of grim novels, these just weren’t my cup of tea. The ending was a bit of a “light at the end of the tunnel” but it didn’t really pull me out of my depressed mood. I don’t like finishing a book and feeling down or confused. The upside, for me, was how thought-provoking the novella was. You can’t just read this one, put it aside and never think about it again. It keeps running around in your head, forcing you to think about all that has happened and what the meaning of it all is.
The writing is beautiful. James Lovegrove succeeded in holding my attention even though the story wasn’t something I particularly enjoyed or would pick when I’m browsing a bookstore. He writes very lively and with the perfect amount of humor to keep you flipping the pages. There is a constant intelligent undercurrent that lifts this story to a higher level and that is something I really like in my books.
I am a bit curious how the other books in his “Pantheon” series would suit me. The fact that I really enjoyed the writing makes me want to try some of his other work. I’ll probably investigate this series and Lovegrove’s other work further once I’ve reduced my TBR pile a little more.