• Lee Franklin

BloodWorm Book Reviews-

Updated: Nov 19

Edwardian Occultists - Demons & Cults

Reviewing Disclaimer

The Occultists



For Edwardian-era spiritualists and illusionists, silence is more than a strategy; it's a way of life. And when Max Grahame, a bullied, small-town teen, discovers a secretive world of occultism and séances right under his nose, he can hardly contain his excitement.

But as Max begins his conjurer's lessons in earnest, his newfound knowledge exposes the group's dark and deeply sinister designs, leading a game of supernatural cat and mouse that takes him from the ancient hills of rural Georgia and the mystic plains of the Midwest to fin-de-siècle Manhattan...and beyond.

My Thoughts:

5 Bloody Worms

Jumping from being an award-winning filmmaker to writing her own creations Schattel jumps mediums like a true artist. I thoroughly enjoyed Schattel's debut novel. Fantastically researched it is a horrific venture into the world of the Occult as the struggle for power constantly tips the world towards anarchy.

Max is a fantastic character with youthful enthusiasm and self-doubt in equal measure. Schattel has no qualms to put him through the wringer as Max discovers his newfound abilities.

Strongly written and highly imaginative, fleeting glimpses of Clive Barker during the Ashtar come to my mind. Schattel delivers a fantastic read that is nigh impossible to put down.

Father Of Lies Trilogy

The first one in this trilogy was originally written as a standalone. For me the 3 varied sufficiently enough to warrant their own reviews.

So please see below for Ritual, Communion and Sacrament.

Ritual - Book 1


Meet Brad.

A quiet, hardworking man who goes about his daily routine with joy.

He works as a telemarketer, trying his best to sell poorly made, over-priced products to the unsuspecting people on the other end of the phone.

Brad doesn't mind though, it's a means to an end.

Life's about to change for Brad. Now that Father has anointed him the Chosen one, the one to open the gates and allow them to flock into the Black Heavens.

Eternity awaits.

But is Brad ready to perform on the big day?

My Thoughts:

3 Bloody Worms

Maybe the hype threw me on this one. I guess I was expecting...more. The MC Brad, well I didn't care for him one way or another. There seemed to be some decent scenes amidst all the bondage and buggery. But, still it was mostly just bondage and buggery. I could sense there was a nugget of an idea unthreading here, and if it was a standalone I may not well of reviewed it. There was nothing wrong for me with the writing as such, the descriptions painted me in the zone and kept pulling me along. Just as a self contained piece if fell flat and I wondered if the hype wasn't just the shock value. Knowing the author had actually sat in the shadows of a cult to research this one, I was intrigued enough to continue reading the series to see what would be unravelled.

Book 2 - Communion

One week after the horrific events at the commune unfolded, Detective McKay is left to pick up the pieces and try to connect the dots.

But before he can determine who this Father character is or what his motivations were, a mysterious redheaded woman arrives at the station.

With one quick act of violence, McKay is dragged into a world he’d never imagined possible.

A world of heinous acts, strange events and a creature from his darkest nightmares.

At the end of the day, McKay will need to find a way to survive, or become another sacrifice by Father in his quest to ascend to the Black Heaven’s.

My Thoughts:

3.5 Bloody Worms

This second novel for me was definitely more interesting as we got into a more theological aspect of the story. I did still feel at time as though parts of the story were missing. The character McKay was at least developed enough for me to care about and Bianchi was a welcome player. There was still the savagery, blood lust from the first and Stred had no problems making McKay suffer and suffer terribly.

Book 3 - Sacrament


Following the events of COMMUNION, Professor Bianchi knows that Father is getting closer to finally completing the steps to ultimately open the doorway and ascend to the Black Heavens. Father is bound and determined to take his place alongside the cosmic chaos Gods. With this in mind, Bianchi must seek out the man himself and try and find a way to put a stop to Father's madness, even as Father himself begins to transform. The stunning conclusion to the Father of Lies Trilogy will leave you filthy and finally discovering the true nature of the Black Heavens.

My Thoughts:

4.5 Bloody Worms

Ok, this one I really enjoyed. Savage and visceral this one was one hell of a ride and thoroughly enjoyed it. The whole story just seemed to flow much better. Whether or not that was a culmination of everything coming together and making more sense for me I don't know. Anyway Bianchi is again an interesting character with a more interesting past. The scenes are brutal and the description of the Black Heaven was enough to send a chill down my spine in 30 degree Carribean heat. This is the read I would highly recommend. I do advise reading the previous two otherwise you will probably get lost in the third.

Available on Amazon and Kindle. Check out John's website Grey Dog Tales


Now before I get started on publicly promoting my book reviews I want to start off with a few points.

1) I will never ever take money to review a book.

2) These are my thoughts and opinions on books I have read for my own pleasure. If you disagree, excellent, that is why there is such an amazing selection of books in the world, something for everyone.

3) Why do most of my reviews have 4-5 Bloodworms?

Well I won't review books I don't finish (DNF) for a start. I am definitely not going to waste time on promoting them. I am quite particular about the books I do select and whilst I am a horror writer, I do read across the genres, neatly sidestepping romance.

4) You will find I am more critical of traditional published books. These people get paid a motza to create a perfect product and have a whole team. Yes I believe Indie authors and presses need to be held to the same account but I am a little more generous. Overall though, if the story doesn't cut it, it doesn't cut it.

5) Finally I am not a professional, qualified nor do I read deep in literary processes. I enjoy different books for many different reasons. Some are just popcorn fun, some are deeper.

63 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Coming Soon