Evelyn Barrett wants to die---as long as her daughter's murderer goes with her! Once a successful attorney on a winning streak, Evelyn will now stop at nothing to seek her own version of justice. Defying police warnings, will this mother-turned-vigilante find the killer before another family is destroyed?
Average Customer Rating:
(10 Reviews) 10
Rating Snapshot(10 reviews)
10 out of 10100%customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Mother's worst nightmare happens. The husband is a big lug who does almost nothing but try to get on with his life. The mother develops an ability, a special gift to find evil. Intriguing, tightly wound writing, but at times the realities with the gift just didn't seem believable enough. I would recommend it and it is a worthy read.
Heather James in her new book, “Unholy Hunger” Book One in the Lure of the Serpent series published by Kregel Publications brings us into the life of Evelyn Barrett.
From the back cover: Evelyn Barrett wants to die.
Once a successful attorney, Evelyn is now taking a case that is far more personal: finding–and punishing–the man who killed her daughter. It’s not the pleas of those around her or even the supernatural tingles that guide her next step. Following what she believes is the stench of evil, Evelyn searches for answers…and her own version of justice. Can the ultimate truth–of crime and retribution, of life and death–ever be swayed by a mother’s revenge?
I think there can be no great pain to a parent then to be told your child is dead. To find out the child was molested and murdered can only compound the grief. It must be heartbreaking for a parent to have to bury their child. I just cannot imagine their suffering. Evelyn Barret knows this suffering as her daughter was kidnapped, sexually molested and murdered and the police cannot find the murderer. So, once she works through her pain, Evelyn sets off to find her daughter’s killer. This book is a thriller that also deals with the issues of kidnapping, molestation, and the murder of children. It also deals with parental grief and marital relations. I think Heather James is an extremely talented writer who really knows how to tell a story that will grab you and keep you flipping pages until you find out who did it. “Unholy Hunger”is a very exciting book that will keep you engrossed in the characters as Ms. James puts them through their paces. This is a wonderful series and I am glad I discovered Heather James. I am so looking forward to the next book in this series
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Kregel Publications. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
An excellent novel! Such an emotional story, I was drawn in right away and though I hated to turn the page I couldn't stop. I had to keep reading. A parents worst nightmare...your child is abducted. Evelyn, the mother, experiences a break down of sorts and the pain and anger grabs hold and won't let go. She wants revenge. Her marriage starts to unravel, she doesn't like who she's becoming. As I read I found myself getting angry, how in the world could someone harm children? I could feel Evelyn's pain.
The author is so talented, the characters are intense, the plot, as horrible as it is, was compelling. This is a very well written suspense novel. 5 out of 5 stars!
I received a copy of this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
I am thrilled to write about this debut novel by Heather James. It is always a privilege to review debuting authors. So without further ado, here is my review.
Written in the first person viewpoint, we meet Evelyn Barrett as she talks about the first Eve and a piece of fruit. From that point forward it becomes a wild roller-coaster ride for Evelyn, emotionally, spiritually and physically.
Heather chose a difficult subject to write about, sexual abuse and murder of young innocent children. Her main character, Evelyn, is a woman who tries to deal with the murder of her only child. It is how she deals with it that will make the reader continue to read this extremely suspenseful novel.
Will she accomplish what she sets out to do? Will revenge fulfill her emptiness?
Heather James has crafted a novel that will have have you turning the pages until you reach the last. An incredible, chilling tale with a spiritual twist that will have you looking at things differently, Unholy Hunger, is a winner for me.
I look forward to reading the next one in this powerful series.
Kregel Publications provided me with a free review copy for the purpose of writing this review.
Unholy Hunger absolutely blew me away! I was completely shocked to read that this was Heather James’s first novel because it’s one of the best I’ve ever read. I was immensely disturbed yet completely absorbed in this novel. I was so glued to this book from page one that I read the book in two days because I could not put it down!
I think as a parent whenever you read about your worst nightmare happening to someone, you can’t help but put yourself in their shoes. I think that being a mother drew me into this story even more because I have a daughter around the same age. It’s horrifying to even think about my child being murdered but that’s what Evelyn Barrett must face.
She responds in much the same way I think I would with first denial, then anger and a need for medication just to get her through. When the fog of the medicine lifts and she is left with her immeasurable grief, her anger and hatred takes over. She becomes a vigelante of sorts, tracking down pedophiles with her newly obtained ability to “smell” them.
What Evelyn discovers the hard way is that no matter how many pedophiles she puts behind bars, her daughter is still dead and the life she once knew including her job and husband are now gone. Only when she faces her reality can she heal and move forward. Her journey will take her through all the stages of grief.
Heather James’s writing is almost poetic and it’s so deep that I hurt when Evelyn hurt and cried when she cried. I felt her rage and desperation and only an amazingly gifted author can pull you that deep into her story with her words. It drew me to a dark place where you think about the worst in human nature but then led me to a feeling of hope and perseverance that the human spirit experiences only after extreme circumstances.
I can not rave enough about this novel and my mere words simply do not do justice to Unholy Hunger. It’s something you have to read for yourself to comprehend.
What a powerful book! Beware, this is an intense book, and though a novel, deals with a serious issue – a mother pursuing the murderer of her young daughter. This is just a warning should it be a subject that would bother you.
Evelyn is a successful attorney. But then her four-year-old daughter is abducted, then found murdered and having been molested. Evelyn is consumed with revenge, wanting the life of the man who took her daughter's life. She spirals into the depths of vengeance even though her husband, friends, and the police try to keep her from that dangerous place.
This is a hard hitting novel. Heather has crafted a well written novel that invites us into the being of a mother tormented by her daughter's murder. We feel her passion to find the murderer and see that he loses his life too. We feel the evil that desires her being, driving her on in her pursuit of vengeance. We also feel the gentle tugging of the Holy Spirit as he points her in the direction God desires.
This novel is intense. It is not a cozy read. It is disturbing and thought provoking. It made me think of how quickly evil can sneak into our motives. But it also reminded me how persistent the Holy Spirit is and how the grace of God will persevere. I highly, highly recommend this book (if you can read about the murder of a child). This book is so well written, I am amazed it is a debut novel. I look forward to the next in the “Lure of the Serpent” series.
This would make a great choice for a reading book. The themes for discussion are serious and many. Again, a warning. The thoughts and actions of Evelyn as she pursues vengeance are intense. If the molestation and murder of a child would bother anyone in your reading group, well, just beware of the intensity of this book.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
What a heart ripping story. Heather James has written a powerful, and page turning read. It reads really fast, because you want answers. Evelyn Barrett seems to have it all...she is a top lawyer and has made mega bucks. She has a wonderful husband Eddie, and a delightful, fun, little four year old, Corrine. She appears to have a wonderful life, when darkness descends, and she is about to loose it all. A filthy beast, a force so evil, has descended on Eddie and Evy, and stolen their child. When their Nanny falls asleep while the little one is playing, she is stolen and murdered. How would one deal with this, God speaks to Evy, but she doesn't always listen, with disastrous results. One result was, in a way good, but would you want it? She started to smell pedofiles, and she does manage to help the police department, maybe. Will the marriage of Eddie and Evelyn be able to survive this, and if so how? Will she be able to find the person responsible? The answers are here, along with the pain.
I was provided with a copy of the book through Kregel Publishers, and was not required to give a positive review.
Successful lawyer Evelyn Barrett is comfortable in her roles as mother and wife and attorney, until she receives news that shatters her world. Her daughter has been brutally murdered. Evelyn is immediately consumed by anger and hatred, forgetting everything else in her life as she burns with one desire. Nothing will stop her from hunting down the murderer and punishing him for taking her precious daughter from her, even if she herself must die in the process. And then, she begins smelling evil....
Debut novelist Heather James offers up a fantastic start to a new series, The Lure of the Serpent, a story of murder and revenge with supernatural overtones. The writing crackles with tension, and I was immediately swept up into the heart-break and the suspense that is woven throughout the pages. Before I picked up the book, I was worried the book might drag if the reader was forced to constantly wallow in Evelyn's grief over the loss of her daughter. But if you have a similar fear, there is no need! The book moves at an unstoppable pace, and I found it incredibly difficult to put the book down for any reason. Evelyn is a unique character and I simply couldn't get enough of seeing the world through her eyes. As a parent myself, I could immediately relate to Evelyn as a parent, though I thank God I've never had to deal with anything like she has. The story of what happens to her daughter is absolutely disturbing, and I can't imagine having to live with such a thing! The added twist of being able to smell evil (I won't say more for fear of giving away too much) is a simply awesome trait to give a character!
I honestly find it hard to believe that this is the first novel Heather James has written. It's a keeper for sure! I'm anxiously awaiting the next book to emerge from Heather's imagination! Bonus points are awarded for being a debut novel, and I give this my highest recommendation of 5 out of 5 stars.
Book has been provided courtesy of the publisher, Kregel, for the purposes of this unbiased review.
This was an interesting and intriguing book for me. I thought the suspense was quite good; it held my attention from the very beginning.
'Yes, I wanted to die. As long as my daughter's murderer died with me, I was ready to go. I was already three quarters of the way there after the blow he had given to my head.'
It builds from there and I was hooked on that part. The part that was a bit more troubling was the spiritual warfare element for which this series derives its name: 'Lure of the Serpent.' After Evelyn gets hit in the head by the man she thinks has killed her daughter, she comes out of a coma with the 'ability' to smell evil. Not just any old kind of evil, but the rank, malodorous stench of those who molest and abuse children. It almost makes her violently ill each time. I won't give away any of the plot by telling how she puts this to use, but I will say this: 'If only it were that easy.'
I'm sure the author realizes this. True, '…we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.' (Ephesians 6.12, ESV). Yet we're not given the ability to detect those rulers, authorities and cosmic powers simply by smell (or by sight or basically any other physical means). This is why the battle is spiritual and why it is done by faith in the Son of God.
James' characters are fun, enjoyable and realistic. The two detectives…I'm wondering if, as a practicing lawyer, James has run across these two characters. Some of the 'villains'––maybe in the same line of art-meets-work? The one character I wish had been just a bit different was Evelyn' husband. I'm not certain how I wish he were different though. Early on, he's saturated in grieving over the murder of his daughter. Later, he's trying to 'save' his wife from herself, but seems to do this by letting come close to 'killing' herself and hoping she'll learn to grieve in another fashion. Only later, does he act the role I was looking for. A huge mark in his favor, however––when he and Evelyn separate and she's certain a divorce is immanent, he fights for their marriage. He clings to it and won't let go. There is a great model for far too many men to emulate. Thank you, Heather James for that.
It will be interesting to see where James takes the rest of this series. I was caught off guard by the ending, the culprit and the leaving off until the next book. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
Be warned, the subject matter of this book is powerful and geared to provoke a strong emotional response!
"Yes, I wanted to die. As long as my daughter's murderer died with me, I was ready to go. I was already three quarters of the way there after the blow he had given to my head.
Everything turned black for a moment as the sudden, slicing pain radiated into numbness. Black then gave way to a white, heavenly blur, and I strained to see past the world closing in on me. I saw a brown shirt, faded jeans, blackened eyes...oh, there he was; there slouched the monster against a kitchen counter. He was clutching one side of his chest, futilely trying to seal the singed bullet hole and cupping his warmed blood before it all bubbled out to the cheap linoleum below.
I fought to see more, to take it all in deeper and beyond the fuzziness of my depleting consciousness, but something oozed over my left eye. More blood. My blood. I blinked, but that made it worse, further welcoming the dark, sticky stuff to seep in from my open wound.
His mouth moved; his lips puckered in and out trying to say something. He looked like a fish plucked from the ocean and left to die on a pier caked with bait and spilled guts. I wondered what he was trying to say, or maybe even ask. Perhaps the question of the day for him would have been a big fat, "Why?"
If he had managed to ask that, I knew how I'd respond: "You want the Why? Join the club, you dying carp."
So opens the Prologue for the novel Unholy Hunger, the first book in the Lure of the Serpent Series by Heather James. It hooks you right from the beginning and never lets go until you turn the final page. It is powerful, and makes you question your own response to what would you do if someone kidnapped your daughter, abused and murdered her. My own response felt much along the lines of just what the author captured in this compelling novel. Along the way, we see things through the eyes of Evelyn Barrett, as she goes from a powerful successful attorney, married to Eddie, a telephone line repair man, and raising their first and only child, Corinne. The emotions she goes through are so real that you often wonder how real this book is. I know that even in my own mind, I was walking through the chapters of her life right along side with her, even though I was watching from a distance. This is every parents nightmare and thus the warning at the beginning of this review.
There are those who wouldn't be able to read this type of book, not for the writing style but simply based on the subject matter. However, Evelyn soon finds herself gifted with a heavenly gift of being able to detect child predators based on their smell. She calls it unholy hunger. They seem to wear their sinful filth like a bad stench and soon finds herself working with the local police to uncover her daughter's murderer based on this gift. The police don't believe she has this ability but soon find her solving more cases than they ever could and bringing the criminals to justice before they have a chance to hurt children like her Corinne.
I received Unholy Hunger by Heather James compliments of Kregel Publications for my honest review and literally could not put this down because I had to see how it turned out. Perhaps it gave me a way to see what the consequences of my actions might be if I too, pursued this type of justice in a safe way. In the end, I think I would have followed things through much the same way as Evelyn even justifying my actions with the fact that nothing remains of you when your child is brutally murdered. I can't wait to see where her next book will be headed, but I know I will be prepared to face the unknown horrors that you often find staring you in the face when the lights go out and the darkness remains. I rate this one a 4 out of 5 stars and loved how it ended.