REAPER’S RAIN: a dark, gritty, inspiring take on The Grim Reaper

Posted: October 26, 2014 in Book reviews

The life of a policeman is not a piece of cake. As a representative of the law, one is always in touch with the dark, violent side of life. Upholding the law means coming in contact with those who stand against it. And the laws of mankind, as we all know, can be broken in an astounding variety of manners. And if that’s true, what’s it like to try to uphold the laws of God?

Author Paul Davis has tried to answer this question in his Christian dark fantasy/horror novel, REAPER’S RAIN, of which I am blessed beyond belief to have received a signed copy. This novel is without a shadow of a doubt the best take on the Grim Reaper I’ve encountered in fiction. Why? Because it’s nothing like I’ve ever read before.

The story is centered on a Tennessee policeman named Seth, who’s murdered in the line of duty. Waking up on the other side, he discovers a truth that could prove unsettling to anyone: he is one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, namely Death, who is supposed to be an essential player in the end times.

The idea of Christian horror fiction has been widely debated. The term itself seems oxymoronic. But is it? Well, Mr. Davis has crafted a tale that shows that it’s not always the case. With an ear to dialogue like I’ve never seen before in a piece of Christian fiction, as well as an ability to pull no punches in the face of the dark and gritty world we live in, the author has made a fine contribution to the realm of Christian horror. It’s very easy to turn the Reaper into this cliché figure of B-movie fame, a hooded skeleton in league with Satan, (you’ll see how far from the popular concept Mr. Davis takes it) damning the souls of sinners. Exactly the reason of Mr. Davis’ choice to explore the concept in a new, fresh manner. The other three Horsemen are figures inspired by Biblical history(the centurion who speared Jesus, the cattle-herder of the Pharaoh during the time of Moses and an Ethiopian who was impaled as a martyr for the One God), rendered in a vivid, action-packed way that will thrill readers.

Be aware that the world described within these pages is dark, violent and desolate, and there are  scenes with tough language, whether  it comes from vile human beings or Satan himself. Quite an act of courage on the part of the author, whose background as  a law enforcer familiarized him with coarseness on different levels. Also, there is a fair share of  graphic scenes, racial slurs(it’s the South, after all, and  sadly, racism is still alive and well), sexuality, so for those of you looking for a Sunday-school read, you won’t find it here. For those who like  their Christian  fiction way on  the  gritty side, this is a 10-star read! Thank you, Mr. Davis! Killer of a job!

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