ARC Review: The Heavens Rise by Christopher Rice
Title: The Heavens Rise
Series: Stand Alone
By: Christopher Rice
Author Info: Website | Twitter | Goodreads
Age Group: Adult
Genre Type: Horror, Supernatural
Publication Date: October 15th 2013
Pages: 336 pages
Publisher: Gallery Books
New York Times bestselling author Christopher Rice brilliantly conjures the shadowed terrors of the Louisiana bayou—where three friends confront a deadly, ancient evil rising to the surface—in this intense and atmospheric new supernatural thriller.
It’s been a decade since the Delongpre family vanished near Bayou Rabineaux, and still no one can explain the events of that dark and sweltering night. No one except Niquette Delongpre, the survivor who ran away from the mangled stretch of guardrail on Highway 22 where the impossible occurred…and kept on running. Who left behind her best friends, Ben and Anthem, to save them from her newfound capacity for destruction…and who alone knows the source of her very bizarre—and very deadly—abilities: an isolated strip of swampland called Elysium.
An accomplished surgeon, Niquette’s father dreamed of transforming the dense acreage surrounded by murky waters into a palatial compound befitting the name his beloved wife gave to it, Elysium: “the final resting place for the heroic and virtuous.” Then, ten years ago, construction workers dug into a long-hidden well, one that snaked down into the deep, black waters of the Louisiana swamp and stirred something that had been there for centuries—a microscopic parasite that perverts the mind and corrupts the body.
Niquette is living proof that things done can’t be undone. Nothing will put her family back together again. And nothing can save her. But as Niquette, Ben, and Anthem uncover the truth of a devastating parasite that has the potential to alter the future of humankind, Niquette grasps the most chilling truths of all: someone else has been infected too. And unlike her, this man is not content to live in the shadows. He is intent to use his newfound powers for one reason only: revenge
The Heavens Rise is a richly atmospheric and supernatural thriller that brings to life New Orleans where an ancient evil lies waiting in the dark shadows of it’s bayou, threatening the lives of three best friends. It is a tale of love, revenge, and friendship.
Christopher Rice creates an intense story filled with supernatural horror that brilliantly brings to life New Orleans. His prose is almost romantic in nature and lulls you with it’s deference to New Orleans and then suddenly- BAM! He hits you with a intense and disturbing scene that has your heart pounding and mind racing. If asked to describe his writing, I would say it was reminiscent of Edgar Allan Poe (deadly romance), Stephen King (supernatural) and a dash of his mother- Anne Rice (beautifully descriptive prose.) I loved how vivid his descriptions were, and how strongly he makes you feel towards a character, you love them or hate them.
Switching between characters, and back and forth between 2005 and 2013, The Heavens Rise unfolds the mystery of what really happened the night Niquette Delongpre disappears along with her family. The supernatural element is freighting, and through Marshal, Niquette, Ben and Anthem’s stories, it becomes terribly real. As the story continues, it is clear just how deadly it is.
Although we begin the story with Niquette, and through her journal learn of the terrors she experience the night she disappeared, I was disappointed she was not a more active character until the conclusion of the story. From the books description, I thought she was the main narrator, but instead it turned out to be told mostly from her best friend Ben's point of view as he tries to uncover what really happened Niquette and the truth behind the devastating parasite. The tension and gore mounts up as the characters come closer to solving the mystery. Then it’s quickly wrapped with a great ending albeit a little too fast for me.
The Heavens Rise is a compelling read with it’s supernatural and horror elements making it a page-turner, and it’s descriptive prose brings life New Orleans. I won’t forget soon the terror found at Elysium nor it’s characters.
My Rating: 4 Stars. I really liked it.
A courtesy review copy of this book was provided by Gallery Books via NetGalley in exchange for my fair review. Thank you Gallery Books for the review opportunity!