Monday, May 4, 2009

"The Kult" by Shaun Jeffrey

“People are predictable. That’s what makes them so easy to kill.”

I was lucky enough to score an advance copy of The Kult by Shaun Jeffrey through a giveaway contest hosted by his publisher, Leucrota Press. Which was amazing, because I was so psyched to read this book. It is a perfect example of why choosing the right cover art is so important, because just seeing the book made me want to read it. Not even knowing what it was about. It may sound silly and is obviously superficial, but there is something about the cover of this book that screams “READ ME!!!”

The premise of the book involves a serial killer, The Oracle, and Prosper Snow, the investigator hunting him down. A simple enough scenario, it would seem. But then our protagonist goes out and does something that throws a wrench into an otherwise well oiled plot-line. He participates in a copy-cat killing at the request of one of his childhood friends. That friend, along with Prosper and several others, is a member of a group called The Kult, which is really a vigilante-esque club that was formed by the members back in their school days.

You might ask yourself why a good person, and a police detective no less, would assist in murdering anyone. The answer is simple: blackmail. Pretty much “Help us murder this guy, or we’ll reveal all of the other crimes you have committed over the years as a member of The Kult.” (Some friends this guy has, right?) Long story short, Prosper helps. And immediately afterward, he and his friends are personally targeted by The Oracle.

But why? No one outside The Kult knew about the murder.

This, of course, leads to suspicion and paranoia among the friends. The feelings are short lived among most of them, as they start to die off one-by-one.

I can’t really go any further into the story without running into spoiler territory, but I will say this: The Kult is impossible to put down. It has a great, almost impossible to solve mystery. The action starts off right away (and the violence is graphic enough to satisfy even the most jaded slasher fan). The climax was action packed, and (in my opinion) one of the most obnoxious characters in the book got what was coming to them, which is always satisfying. All in all, a really great read. Easily four stars.

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