"There's always a price to pay."
Reviewed by Lynn Cunningham
Posted May 3, 2015
Suspense | Historical
Thad and Rachael McAlister along with their young daughter
Ashley are living the life of their dreams. Thad is a
successful writer of horror books that have been devoured
an adoring public. In fact, he is so successful that three
of his books have been optioned for movies and his latest
soon-to-be published novel is already garnering the
of film makers. On top of all this, they live in a home
anyone would envy, and Rachael will soon be delivering a
brand new member of the family.
Oh yes, life is very good in the McAlister household.
that it might not be quite as good as it appears on the
Rachael has begun dreaming of an old woman who clicks her
long fingernails together in an odd manner. This woman
keeps demanding that Rachael give her something that she
claims is hers. The old woman keeps saying "I want what is
The dreams are worrisome, of course, but they are nothing
compared to the reality that awaits the McAlisters one
morning when they awake. Something has infected their
lawn; something ugly and odiferous. There's no reasonable
explanation for it.
That's only the beginning of the trials that face this
family during the next three days. An evil older and more
terrible than anyone can imagine has some definite plans
Thad and Rachael. This evil is determined to walk the
once more and it will use them to do so.
FORSAKEN is one of the creepiest, nerve-jangling books
I've ever had the pleasure to read. The story elicited
responses from me, all of them spoken aloud. There was jaw
dropping shock; "don't look under the bed" suspense; hand
wringing helplessness; and the hope that I was wrong about
what was going to happen next.
Seriously, FORSAKEN has everything that a devoted fan of
horror genre could ever want in a book. J.D. Barker takes
old idea and puts an entirely fresh, new spin on it. For
fans of Stephen King, there is a delightful little
that I am not going to ruin here. Just know that you are
going to love how Mr. Barker wove it into his original
FORSAKEN is the first novel penned by J. D. Barker and I
deliriously happy to report that it will not be his last.
has begun what he calls The Shadow Cove Saga with
and I am avidly anticipating the next book in this saga.
is interesting to note that Mr. Barker also resides in
Shadow Cove, Massachusetts.
J. D. Barker has created a world within FORSAKEN that is
enough to make you want to leave all the lights on even
after you have finished the last page. There's plenty of
things for you to ponder long after you close the book,
that is definitely a sign of a spectacular book.
Mr. Barker may have begun by following in the footsteps of
such horror royalty as Stephen King, John Saul and Dean
Koontz; but he has blazed a unique path of his own with
FORSAKEN. It is a path that I look forward to traveling
again in the near future.
Learn more about Forsaken
Book One of the Shadow Cove Saga
Inspired by Actual Events
Excerpt from the Journal of Clayton Stone – 1692
She was examined today without torture at Shadow Cove
township on the charge of witchcraft. She said she was
wholly innocent of the crime and has never in life
God. I watched as they brought her out. A poor, sickly
thing, worn by her time behind the walls of her prison.
bared feet and hands bound in leather, her clothing
to that of ruin. Despite such condition, her head was held
high, her eyes meeting those of her accusers. She still
refuses to provide her name so we remain unable to search
baptismal records, nor has her family stepped forward to
claim her as their own. We have no reason to believe she
anything but an orphaned child. I find myself unable to
at her directly in the moments preceding her trial. She is
watching me though; with eyes of the deepest blue, she is
Thad McAlister, Rise of the Witch
When horror author Thad McAlister began his latest novel,
tale rooted in the witch trials of centuries past, the
flowed effortlessly. The story poured forth, filling page
after page with the most frightening character ever to
from his imagination. It was his greatest work, one that
would guarantee him a position among the legends of the
But was it really fiction?
He inadvertently opened a door, one that would soon
jeopardize the lives of his family.
She wants to come back.
At home, his wife struggles to keep their family alive.
Secretly wondering if she caused it all…a deal she made
ago. A deal with the Forsaken.
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