4 of 5 stars
There is so much going on with this book I don’t even know where to start! Maledicus isn’t your typical ghost chasing story, it’s much deeper and much richer than that. The group of men that are leading up the investigation are very unique. Each one bringing his own special qualities, and past to the table. Charles F. French did more than merely building his characters up with personality and an occasional insight to their past. He actually told each of their back stories in much detail. As the readers, we know everything there is to know about this team. Their loves, families, careers, hobbies, and more deeply their losses. The paranormal investigation team in this book is compiled by awesome individuals. I honestly can’t even make up my mind on a favorite as its a toss up between Roosevelt and Patrick.
My favor for Roosevelt completely pools around his deceased wife Sarah. The love that they shared was one of a kind, and written very beautifully. He promised her that he would live his life and not just give up after her death. He’s followed through with the promise for years, but every day its a struggle. She’s always in his mind and even his dreams. Theirs is kind of a story within a story and its hauntingly beautiful! Even in death she is there for him in his darkest times.
Patrick is my favorite for different reasons. His story is unique in other ways. He had a twin who never really left him when he died. They have this very special afterlife bond and are able to communicate. When Patrick meditates in a certain way, his twin takes control of his subconscious and is able to message him physically. Patrick is out cold yet his hand is busy at work writing hand written messages to himself from his brother. I thought this was such an awesome gift to have and it really made an impact on how the story plays out. I hate spoilers and don’t want to give anything away, so lets just say that Patrick and his brother are key to this particular investigation! I love what the bond of these brothers transform into, and I also love the way Charles ties in their background as soldiers at the end.
Now, as for Maledicus, the evil spirit taking control of this entire book. Just WOW!! I can’t even tell you how many nightmares this demented soul has given me! He is evil in it’s truest form. French couldn’t have told his story better had the devil himself possessed him while writing. In ancient Rome Maledicus was a very evil man! He was the right hand to an emperor with his own agenda, and he fed off of the torture and deaths of many many people. No man, woman, or child was safe from his demented ways. In death, Maledicas was watched by demons and ultimately given a gift of collected souls to use at his will, as he himself made the transition to demon. He is transformed into a statue and sent back to the earth to continue reeking havoc and soul consumption on the human race. He does his job well… That is until he crosses paths with this certain paranormal investigative team.
Another awesome quality about this book is that it doesn’t only tell about the evil in Maledicus’ heart/soul, but it also tells of the horrid things he does in haunting in the statue form. Each ancient collector is plagued with horror and death. Maledicus torments each and every collector in its own way. Not only is he the root of several heinous deaths, but he consumes their souls when he’s done with them.
After being passed through the hands of many, the statue of Maledicus winds up in the office of Helen. I love Helen! She’s smart, classy, and loves everything antique, especially Victorian. What I love most about Helen, is the way she cares for her niece. After the loss of her sister and brother in law Helen is granted custody of their daughter Helena. It’s actually the small girl who is haunted the most by Maledicus. Helen cares too much, and doesn’t stand for it. She believes the child, and she can feel the fear inside. She contacts Roosevelt, Patrick, and the rest of the team. The sickness that Helena’s haunting transforms into is heart wrenching.
Maledicus’s spirit is so strong and so powerful, they are able to make contact with him in their very first attempt at using their equipment. After which the contact made progresses into very intense contact. Maledicus gets into their heads especially toward the end and it is a fight for each of them. The team is very professional, very brave, and very dedicated to their work, yet even they aren’t prepared for just how terrible Maledicus actually is. In their defense, how can you be?
The team sets to work. They don’t know about the statue at first, they only know that there is most definitely paranormal activity in this home. They can tell right off the bat how evil it truly is. It also doesn’t take them long to figure out that Helen’s office has something special to offer in the investigation. When Maledicus reveals his name to the men, the research really begins.
I absolutely love how layered this story is! It tales the ins and outs of every single character, offering one life’s story after another. The investigation is unique and absolutely bone chilling. It actually took me a long time to read because I’d often got to frightened and would have to take breaks to do wholesome things, in order to keep my mind right. This book is unlike anything I’ve ever read and it scared the holy living crap out of me. It’s the type of horror that I could totally see being a motion picture! Nice work Charles F. French, you’re book is officially the scariest horror that I’ve ever read!
“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” (Edmund Burke)
Roosevelt Theodore Franklin attempts to make it through life day by day. Roosevelt is a widower, who lost his beloved wife to cancer and a retired history professor, and he has not stopped grieving. Along with his two closest friends, also retired and who have also lost loved ones, the three men form a paranormal investigation group. They hope to find an answer to the question: is there life after death?
When asked by a local teacher to investigate a possible haunting of her house, the group
discovers an evil beyond anything they could have imagined. This is no mere ghost. Maledicus, who was in life a pimp, torturer, and murderer during Caligula’s reign in Rome, in death has become a sociopathic demon that attacks the weak and the innocent. Maledicus threatens a five year old child’s life and soul. Terrified by what they have discovered, Roosevelt and his friends must choose to either walk away from this threat , or to do battle with this ancient creature at the potential loss of their sanities, their lives, and their souls.