THE BEDEVILED by Thomas Cullinan

The Bedeviled - Thomas Cullinan

 

THE BEDEVILED was a nice romp through the 70's satanic cult paranoia, with a pinch of witchcraft and rituals tossed in for good measure. To be honest, I don't know WHAT or who this group was worshiping, but there was an upside down cross and it was creepy as hell!

 

The Caine family loses an aunt who leaves them her old home, (more like a warehouse, really), and soon they're off to explore their inheritance. They meet the creepy neighbors, the husband falls and breaks some bones, and soon their temporary stay turns more permanent. Shortly thereafter, their son starts acting strangely, weird things begin to occur and Maggie, the mom, begins to wonder if she's losing her mind. Will the Caine family ever go back home? Will their son ever get back to normal? And why does Maggie start to think she's actually someone else? You'll have to read this to find out!

 

THE BEDEVILED definitely feels dated, but that didn't bother me. Well, there was an incident that everyone took to be nothing, but today would have caused a huge ruckus and rightfully so. (It was hard for me to get my mind around the fact that this act wasn't even viewed as serious back then.) I enjoyed the slow burn of this tale, and how it incorporated elements and themes that are tropes of the genre today. It was fun to see how these things became tropes in the first place.

 

I do think the last third of book lost a bit of the momentum and while I did enjoy the shocking denouement, I would have enjoyed actually seeing what happened, rather than looking back on it even more.

 

Mostly slow burning, THE BEDEVILED was a lot of (70's style) fun, with an interesting cast of characters, and a few genuinely creepy moments. I never guessed what was coming and the end was a pretty big shocker which made up a bit for that little loss of pacing.

 

Recommended!

 

*Thanks to Valancourt Books for the e-ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review. This is it.*