It’s been a while since I’ve done a book review—November’s been a busy month. Wendigo Rising released, I did a blog tour for Strange Magic, me and the family moved internationally (we’re, for the time being, back in the states), plus it was NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month, for all you out there who have a life that doesn’t revolve around writing). With that all said, I’ve still had a chance to read some good books. One of those books was Dead-Eyed God, the third full-length novel in Sam Witt’s Pitchfork County series. This was a great addition to the series and really sets the stage for some big happenings.
Dead-Eyed God (from the back flap): When the elder witch of Pitchfork County finds a web-shrouded corpse dangling from a tree, her first-call is to the Joe Hark, the Night Marshal. But Joe soon discovers the local law wants him dead and even his old boss is ready to throw him to the wolves.
As Joe uncovers the sinister connections between the string of murders and the schemes of the Long Man, he finds himself tangled in a web of ancient evil, dark secrets, and bone-deep betrayal.
To unravel the hellish plans of his enemies, Joe must risk everything on a gamble that will change Pitchfork County forever.
The MC: Joe Hark, the Night Marshal of Pitchfork County, once again takes center stage in Dead-Eyed God. He’s still Joe—tough, ornery, quick-silver temper—but he’s grown a lot since book one. He’s staying on the sober-wagon, he’s reconciled the tension within his strange supernatural family, and he’s genuinely trying to be a better person: someone the people of Pitchfork look to for help instead of someone they cower in fear from. His family, Stevie, Al, and Elsa, also get some great page time, but this novel is definitely more firmly rooted in Joe’s perspective then Night Blooded Boys was.
The World: Pitchfork county has been a great (though also terrible) place to visit, with a mythos that is quite unique and fun to read about. Each book only adds to that, widening the scope of the world and adding in new creatures and baddies, both epic and grotesque.
The Story and Writing: The plot fairly straight forward: track down leads, bust some skulls, and beat the holy-hell out of the baddies whenever possible. I really enjoyed this novel, though the plot held a few less twists then I’ve come to expect—my only minor criticism of an otherwise great story. The ending is … well, no spoilers, but both great and awful. Joe’s powers also get a pretty crazy boost, which makes me very interested to see just how the story will progress from here. The writing is fantastic and, as per usual, this is an action-oriented book—and Sam Witt knows how to do action, let me tell you—with a fair amount of gore. Okay, maybe more than a fair amount of gore. If you can stomach it, though, its definitely worth the read.
The Rating: Five Stars for a great continuation in a great series. Buy it here: Dead-Eyed God