Revenant by Olivia Lorenz
Samhain Publishing
GLBT Horror/Suspense (M/M)
ISBN: 1-59998-329-X
Reviewed by Sabella

   

 

Jack Hunter is an archeologist supervising a dig in Santorini, with little hope of finding anything of note.  However, one day his crew finds a grave which is a mass of contradictions.  The workers warn Jack that he should leave this skeleton untouched, but Jack’s curiosity and sense of discovery won’t let him leave well enough alone.  When strange things begin happening Jack must confront the reality of the myth of the “vrykolakas” and the consequences of Jack’s involvement with him.

Belas is a “vrykolakas” or revenant.  In Greece few things are feared more than a revenant, because their whole reason for existence is revenge.  Belas approaches Jack with a deal Jack couldn’t refuse: a little blood, sweat and semen in exchange for the archeological find of a lifetime.  The object of Belas’ revenge is not within his reach, so he diverts himself avenging himself for lesser wrongs, but in the meantime his relationship with Jack evolves and becomes something neither one of them recognizes.  How will they bridge the chasm of death between them?

Revenant is a tale of horror and suspense, which is rich in detail and intrigue.  The characters are really well drawn, the plot is well developed and it touches on the themes of revenge, jealousy, ambition, love and friendship.  However, I found the characters unappealing and unsympathetic.  While reading the book I at times felt that I was watching a gruesome car accident but unable to look away.  The most difficult thing for me about reading this book was that I couldn’t see things working out to a happy ending for Jack or Belas and I’m still unsure how I feel about the actual ending.  Revenant is not a light or short read, and I would only encourage you to get it if you really enjoy dark and anguished circumstances where the characters’ endings are ambiguous.

     

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