The Burning Time is a book of dark fiction and horror written by JG Faherty. Ancient evil drawn from Lovecraftian lore arrives in the town of Hastings Mills. In this classic small town environment, the author mixes a generous amount of good vs evil with a bit of romance and a pinch of magic to create The Burning Time. He makes writing look easy with this excellent, fast-paced read.
Faherty begins by introducing the reader to the small town as it copes with a heat wave. After a hint of worse things to come, the author is quick to fulfill his promise. A quiet voice in the night whispers sweet, deadly words to a broken-hearted girl. And so starts the evil in Hastings Mill.
All of the characters in The Burning Time are well written, even those who play only a secondary role. They keep the reader engaged in the story and rooting for the good guys. My only issue is with John Root arriving in town as an old man. His attraction to the young woman, the memories of his mother, and the humble use of the tools of his trade made it difficult to visualize an old man (or who should star in the movie role). Despite that oddity and the predictability of Root’s “handyman” status, he was still a fine character with a bag full of tricks up his sleeve. A character I would like to read more of.
The addition of the Elders and Cthulhu into the storyline added a delightful bit of horror to the scenes. For a reader not familiar with The Old Ones, Faherty’s novel will be a fine introduction to a new universe full of evil. As a recent student of the Cthulhu Mythos myself, finding the Old Gods in his writing was like finding a friend. For readers not familiar with the mythos, read The Burning Time first. Then find out what the mythos is about. You may want to read it again.
JG Faherty writes in a style that is clean, easy to read, and well-paced. He builds up the suspense through the first half of the novel and follows through with lots of action in the second. There is plenty of gore and creepy things for those who like that sort of thing. Not so much that it would turn you away from the story - but enough to be horror. The ending was somewhat predictable, but dramatic with quality descriptions of the things that mattered.
The author kindly provided a free copy of The Burning Time for me to review. I highly recommend adding any of Faherty's books to your reading list. The Burning Time is my current favorite. I enjoy his style of writing and look forward to more.