An ancient evil lurks beneath the watery depths, setting the Natives and British warring against each other once again.
In 1862 Abraham is on his next big adventure – hunting for gold in California with his brother Billy. Stumbling upon a horrific sight, the two brother’s lives are changed forever, tainted by the evil lingering beneath the surface.
Chief Hakan gathers his men to fight against a force long-forgotten. Discontent and suspicion are sown in the Native tribes and the British when both sides are attacked, and believing the other side is responsible.
Lieutenant George Crook faces a terrible adversary that he struggles to understand. While both sides prepare to go to war, Lieutenant Crook sets out to unite with the natives to defeat this formidable foe.
The story begins with Abraham and Billy searching for treasure. Digging up an ancient satchel, native American carvings, and a skull, sets off a terrible presence lurking below. Unbeknownst to Billy, this presence possesses his brother.
The beginning had me pulled right in. Does a curse affect this place? Does the mucky ground hold more than gold beneath its dark depths?
It then cuts to Chief Haken approaching a village and discovering the women, children, and braves have simply disappeared. No enemy is present, as though no human ever existed there, only one murdered family.
Lieutenant George Crook faces a dilemma that appears that Native Americans are gathering to fight again. Evidence is mounting that the white man has attacked native Americans, whereas on the other side, it appears the native Americans are attacking the soldiers.
The motive of the events unfolding appear to be set to drive the sides into war again. And so, the mystery builds. Leading the reader into the precarious world of the New World and the savagery that comes with establishing that order.
Crook is restless and concerned after recovering from a brutal attack from a native that almost appeared possessed. Violence and discontent festers on both sides, both believing the other side is warring against them.
The author quickly introduces the main premise without fully giving away exactly what it is. Several key character’s POVs narrate the story from both sides, providing the different perspectives on such brutal times. Crook demonstrates he is a wise man, unwilling to carry out violent acts without hearing the other side.
It was easy to get lost in this tale of possession, while integrating historical events that bring the story to life and remind us just how far we have come.
There is a lot of exposition, with the occasional reference to the ancient myth Chindi. At times it can go quite slow, then boom, you are hit with a quick burst of brutality, before it simmers down again.
It isn’t a complex plot. The story is laid out pretty quickly. It is more about defeating the evil whose only mission is to maim and destroy. Crook seems the main focus, with Hakan taking the next lead. The others contribute with basic backstories of what they have encountered, and the atrocities they have seen and committed. Crook seems an open-minded solider determined to try and do the right thing after so much blood-shed as occurred. Even though at times it appears he believes his ways are better, he is still prepared to listen to others, creating a likeable and successful leader.
Tension increases slightly as the horde draws near. The characters bounce off each other nicely, utilizing the British and Native American skills to work together.
A simple read that rapidly introduces what to expect from the book, with the ending keeping things open for the next saga of this ancient myth.
Not overly graphic or scary, just utilizing a popular theme and incorporating an historical event and native myth to bring something a little different.
Readers that enjoy that good ole fashioned horror without too much gore, and a little bit of history might enjoy this read.