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Reviewed by Joel R. Dennstedt for Readers' Favorite
Raven’s Peak by Lincoln Cole starts off with a bang and rarely lightens up its drama. The explosive prologue delivers a decidedly necessary orientating mix of intrigue, violence, and “demoness” to introduce the reader properly to the definitively alternate world that he is entering, as well as to encounter two most pivotal characters, one of whom – the self-flagellating Reverend - yet remains only as a motivating background to the remainder of the story. The young woman, Abigail, whom he delivers from possession, remains central. This meaty introduction is followed by another in Chapter One; still intriguing, but much less gritty … for now. Haatim, a bright but emotionally battered young man, is hired by a stranger to investigate a stalker. Sounds conventional enough, except the demons and Abigail are much closer than you think.
Lincoln Cole does a masterful job in Raven’s Peak of developing his demonic version of the world. His more dire explanations for the evil embedded there are consistent and convincing, and one feels comfortable – if that can even be an appropriate feeling here – with suspending disbelief in order to engage more fully. But the author does more than just create a personal demonic version of events; he creates characters whom we care about and root for – one, a bit more heroic than the other. Mr. Cole also has a talent for realistic dialogue and the mundane moments of normal human interactions, some much needed sardonic humor, and many well-thought-out plot developments to keep the reader active in his reading. This book is obviously the first in a proposed series, and Cole has done a proper job of preparing a most intriguing framework for future visits to this literally insane world.