Book Review: HELLCRAFTER by Eve Harms

Posted: January 28, 2020 in Book Review
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Hellcrafter (Kendra Temples: The Demonic Diaries Book 2) by [Harms, Eve]

HELLCRAFTER is the sequel to 2018’s THE SECRET NAME by horror writer Eve Harms. As a result, this review contains spoilers for the first book. You’ve been warned. I did receive an ARC of this book for free for the purpose of giving an honest review.

HELLCRAFTER picks up where THE SECRET NAME leaves off, as Kendra Temples finds herself jobless and near broke after she inadvertently let an evil spirit named Mhaqal out in to the world, but at least she has her boyfriend Carlos, so something is going right. She takes a job at a float spa, which is comprised of sensory deprivation tanks that people can rent to get away from the world. One of the perks of her job is she can use the tank so long as it’s not taking time away from her other work and it’s not interfering with a client.

There’s a slight hitch, though, in that she tends to psychically project into a hellscape when she goes into the tank. There, she discovers that her former boyfriend (now deceased) is trapped there, skinless, with only a goat headed humanoid for a companion. What follows is Kendra’s quest to save her ex-boyfriend while trying to balance work and her relationship with her new boyfriend. It involves her going back to the house where all the trouble originated and digging deeper into the occult. Eve Harms does a fair amount of work detailing the djinn that inhabit the prison, and there are enough twists to keep the reader going.

Like the first book, HELLCRAFTER is constructed of a series of blog posts, so Kendra fully takes advantage of breaking the fourth wall to address the audience directly. While the more relaxed and casual tone works for the most part, it makes some of the action set pieces more questionable. Plus, the reader has to determine if the action is really what is happening or if Kendra is deliberately exaggerating her life and fabricating the more exotic details. Finally, since it is a series of posts, unless they suddenly cease (or another narrator somehow takes over) some of the narrative tension is lost because you know she has to survive to write the story.

All that said, HELLCRAFTER is a quick and enjoyable horror romp with a nice splatter of gore.

It is currently available for preorder at Amazon and is releasing February 12.

4 out of 5 stars.

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