Book Review: The Forest Bull by: Terry Maggert

Rating: 5/5

Publisher: Createspace

Publication Date: August 15, 2013

Origins:  From Author for Review

Format:  E-book

Book Links:  Amazon / Barnes & Noble

Synopsis: Three lovers who stalk and kill the immortals that drift through South Florida (tourists are a moveable feast, after all) are living a simple life of leisure- until one of them is nearly killed by woman who is a new kind of lethal. When Ring Hardigan isn't making sandwiches for, and with, his two partners, Waleska and Risa (they're cool like that), he's got a busy schedule doing the dirty work of sending immortals to the ever after. Wally and Risa provide linguistics, logistics, and finding the right place for him and his knife-- together, they're a well-oiled machine, and they've settled into a rhythm that bodes ill for the Undying. Warlocks, vampires, succubae and the odd ghoul have all fallen to their teamwork. Life is tough, but they soldier on killing the undead, liberating their worldly goods for charity, and generally achieving very little.

-Until Ring wakes up after nearly dying at the hands of a woman who may or may not be the daughter of Satan. Ring's a tough character, for a boat bum (killing immortals sort of rubs off on you that way), but twelve days of comatose healing are enough to bring out the ugly side of his temper. When a letter arrives asking for their help finding a large collection of stolen heirloom jewelry, they form an uneasy friendship with the last Baron of a family hiding in a primal European forest. Cazimir, the Baron, has two skills: Jeweler and preserver of the last herd of forest bulls. It's an odd occupation, but then, Ring, Risa and Wally aren't your everyday career folks, and Cazimir's lodge might be sitting on something that looks a lot like hell, which, according to a 2400 year old succubus hooker named Delphine, is currently on the market to the strongest immortal. The Baron's impassioned plea to find the jewelry comes with some conditions-- he doesn't want the collection back as much as he does the thief, Elizabeth, who happens to be his daughter-- and the woman who nearly sent Ring to his grave. In a tapestry of lies, it's up to Ring, Wally and Risa to find out what is evil, who is human, and who really wants to reign over hell.

Review: ‘The Forest Bull’ is a horror novel with truly evil creatures and a trio of hunters who will stop at nothing to rid the world of them. Ring, Waleska (Wally), and Risa are hunters who have been personally affected by the Undying and also have a few tricks of their own which come in handy while hunting. Yet there may be a bigger web they never knew of directing their lives and activities to this point. The trio has hunted all manner of creature, from vampires to ghouls and everything in between. Now they have a new deadly enemy and perhaps deadlier friend. I was impressed with ‘The Forest Bull’ from the beginning. The characters of Ring, Wally, and Risa truly work well together and I loved their dynamic as friends, hunters, and lovers. I was also impressed with the Undying creatures as they weren’t all identical or had similar powers/killing methods even though they were sired from the same creature. The mythos the author created was complex, but still easy to understand. I thought it was really interesting how Ring, Wally, and Risa would gain power from killing the Undying. I didn’t have a problem with them taking the Undying’s possessions to sell as they rarely kept anything for themselves, but donated the cash to those more deserving than the ones who had owned the items. I am hoping we see more of the hunters in a future novel because there is so much more for them to discover. ‘The Forest Bull’ is a truly engaging and fascinating story!

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