Kirkus Reviews QR Code
THE 13TH DEMON by Bruce Hennigan

THE 13TH DEMON

Alter of the Spiral Eye

By Bruce Hennigan

Pub Date: Nov. 9th, 2006
ISBN: 0-595-40396-4

Christian allegory masquerading as a horror novel.

One stormy morning on the Louisiana coast, Jonathan Steel wakes up on a windswept beach naked, covered in bruises, and suffering from broken ribs and fingers. After being rushed to the hospital, Steel spends the next week-and-a-half in a semi-conscious state, haunted by terrifying visions of a man with a swirling tattoo around his eye. Upon awakening–and discovering that he has been taken into the care of a beautiful doctor named April–Steel realizes that he can remember nothing from his past. He’s then transferred to a psychiatric center, where he is confronted by a maniacal–and likely homicidal–inmate named Braxton, who claims to have secret knowledge of Steel’s past. Released from the hospital, Steel is taken in by April and her father, and he begins to rebuild his shattered life. But his fragile dream world comes crashing down when Braxton escapes from the hospital and, coming to kill Steel, slaughters April and her father. It quickly becomes apparent that Braxton–and Ketrick, a powerful, corrupt oil baron–are in the employ of a powerful demonic force struggling to be born into the world, and the still-confused Steel is the only person who can stop it. Steel draws his power from his martial-arts skills, a crack aim with a pistol and an unwavering belief in the Christian God. As the narrative progresses, the Christian element becomes increasingly overt, and often devolves into awkward proselytizing. Hennigan is a competent storyteller and prose stylist, but the religious undertones skew his otherwise interesting tale.

An unsettling mix of the macabre and the evangelical.