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Reviewed by Asher Syed for Readers' Favorite
Holy Terror by John R. Dougherty is a Christian fiction novel that follows the investigation of Miami police detectives Ian Jelani and his partner Lane Madigan as they seek to apprehend a murderer targeting criminals through ritualistic killings. The detectives uncover a series of similar homicides occurring nationwide, garnering media attention and earning the perpetrator the moniker "Holy Terror." Unbeknownst to Jelani and Madigan, the perpetrator is revealed to be Thumos, an angel known as Yahweh's righteous enforcer who has historically punished evildoers on behalf of God. However, these recent killings deviate from God's divine will, putting Thumos' soul in jeopardy of succumbing to darkness. Concurrently, Jelani and Madigan grapple with their personal struggles in accepting God's plan. As the story unfolds, the characters confront their spiritual dilemmas and navigate the complexities of their faith.
“Satan, where are you, you filthy scum?” This is my favorite line in Holy Terror by John R. Dougherty and I go back and forth between saying it in the voices of John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, and Al Pacino. The last one is mostly because I don't feel like an angel would sound like a cowboy. Holy Terror is the first book in Dougherty's The Holy Terror series, which is not about your nephew but is even more exciting because it has really well-written epic battle scenes between theological giants, angels, and other creatures of God's divine creation. Unlike most novels in the genre, Dougherty employs a constant thread of humor throughout and this goes a long way in balancing out the biblical, scriptural, and doctrinal references that Christian fiction requires. As a non-Christian reader, I still found the overall story to be exactly as speculative fiction has to be above all else: entertaining. And Holy Terror is entertaining, indeed. Very highly recommended.