A Debt of Survival

Fiction - Horror
341 Pages
Reviewed on 03/09/2017
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Divine Zape for Readers' Favorite

It’s true that the most terrifying horrors a human being can feel are in the mind and A Debt of Survival by L.F. Falconer aptly justifies this. The reader is introduced to a very compelling character, Don Lattimore, a man who had his stint in the army and who retired to a quiet life in Diablo Springs, serving his community as a sheriff. He thinks his past has been buried and that he has moved on, but when he discovers evidence of evil activities in an abandoned house, he knows it is the beginning of a terrifying journey for him as he begins to live his worst nightmares. Possessed by a powerful evil that causes the death of people in his county, the sheriff has to pay the impossible price if he’ll save lives. The question is: Does he have the courage to do what he needs to do to stop this evil from consuming everyone around him?

The pervading spookiness of this gripping horror tale starts from the very first page. The reader already knows that he or she is in for a dreadful ride the moment they read the first sentences of the story. The plot is beautifully imagined and the author’s writing flows flawlessly; it is measured and so tightly knit that the reader will be blown away by the lyricism in the prose. It is impossible not to feel deeply for Don Lattimore as he struggles helplessly against his own demons. A Debt of Survival is the kind of book that makes readers spend sleepless nights. The drama is intense and the reader can feel their pulse rise as they turn each page. L.F. Falconer is a master at creating a plot that leaves readers engrossed and transported.

Samantha Dewitt (Rivera)

Lattimore knows that something happened to him on that battlefield in Korea all those years ago, but he’s determined to push it to the back of his mind, ignoring the things that he witnessed and the things that he did. But even he can’t begin to imagine the horror that he unleashed all those years ago, and just what it will do to his family now that it’s come back for more. But with death shaking up his small town from every corner, is everything the fault of the monster he unleashed? Or is there more than one monster in Diablo Springs? Maybe one that doesn’t even seem like the monster that it is, until it’s too late for all of them in A Debt of Survival.

Don Lattimore, his children, Foley, and even his wife and the under sheriff are all characters that you feel like you really get to know and that you really want to know. Each of them has their own personality and flaws that make them seem real and, even more than that, make you care about them. This is a story of fantastic (though not in a good way) things that happen in a small town, when you’ve made a debt with the devil (even unwittingly). If you’re interested in a lot of action and even more horror, then you’re definitely going to love A Debt of Survival by L. F. Falconer, because it’s going to give you all that and more, with just enough love and redemption.

Arya Fomonyuy

A Debt of Survival by L.F. Falconer is a stunning blend of horror and fiction, a story that will make readers look over their shoulders as they walk down a deserted lane in broad daylight. It has been years since Don Lattimore left the army. He is enjoying the quiet life at Diablo Springs, serving as a county sheriff. When he notices disturbing signs of an evil presence in an abandoned house, the sheriff could have simply moved on, except that something evil is awakened in him, a deadly, poisonous thing that causes the death of the very people he is bound to protect, and the only way to stop it is to walk a path he isn’t ready to walk. He must do something because the more time passes, the more people die.

L.F. Falconer took me by surprise and I am completely impressed with the writing. The author has a unique way of bringing images into the minds of his readers. The story explores dark corners of the psyche of the protagonist and creates scenes that will inspire fear in readers. Readers get to care about the characters and they immediately become concerned about Lattimore’s predicament. There is some kind of sweet music in Falconer’s prose, a sweet, delicate music that the reader can’t ignore. The choice of words and the sentence structures are filled with it. It breathes through the entire writing. L.F. Falconer is one of those authors whose writing impresses a sense of power, of magic, and immediacy on readers so powerfully they feel helplessly drawn into the pull of the story. A Debt of Survival was, indeed, an exciting read.