Desecration by J.F. Penn made me cringe. I write horror—much of it quite graphic—so when a book makes me uncomfortable I know it’s of the highest quality. Be warned. Desecration is not for the weak, squeamish or easily offended. It’s not sparkly vampires or ghostly love affairs. This is gritty, graphic horror infused within a mystery/thriller and the combination is simply brilliant.
From the Amazon product description:
LONDON. When the body of a young heiress is found within the Royal College of Surgeons, Detective Sergeant Jamie Brooke is assigned to the case. An antique ivory figurine found beside the body is the only lead and she enlists Blake Daniel, a reluctant clairvoyant, to help her discover the message it holds.
When personal tragedy strikes, Jamie has nothing left to lose and she must race against time to stop the mysterious Lyceum claiming another victim.
As Jamie and Blake delve into a macabre world of grave robbery, body modification, and the genetic engineering of monsters, they must fight to keep their sanity, and their lives.
A story of vengeance and passion for justice, a dark mystery with an edge of supernatural thriller.
I was immediately rooting for Sergeant Jamie Brooke. Her daughter is dying and yet she is a strong lead character. She doesn’t take any guff from the guys in the department, she rides a motorcycle, carries a gun and wears a black leather jacket. Her investigation into the mysterious organization known as Lyceum takes her into a subculture of corpse art and mutilation. The story really heats up when she is personally pulled into the investigation and to say more would be a spoiler. The story is textured, riveting and so well-written that I became lost in it.
You probably know Joanna Penn from her blog, The Creative Penn, where she provides a wealth of resources on marketing and publishing. What you may not know is J.F. Penn writes some of the best horror/mystery/thriller on the market today. Do yourself a favor and pick up Desecration. But leave the lights on.
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