Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Magdalena Curse-F. G. Cottam

The Magdalena Curse
F. G. Cottam
Dunne, Aug 2 2011, $25.99
ISBN: 9780312643256

Ten years old Adam Hunter suffers terrible nightmares and can speak in languages that he never heard or studied but only for short bursts. His worried father Mark takes Adam to Dr. Elizabeth Bancroft. She is amazed when her patient speaks Russian, but Mark explains he will forget the language in a few hours.

Mark explains that his son’s illness was caused when he and his special operations team were in Bolivia on a mission. They ran into sorceress Mrs. Mallory, who killed the unit except for him but also cursed his offspring. Elizabeth believes Adam is possessed and will try to help the child. At the same Mark leaves his offspring with her, he heads from Scotland to South America believing the death of Mrs. Mallory is the only chance he has to save his child. Her patient’s plight forces Elizabeth to accept her inherited sorcery skills that she purposely ignored.

This is a super supernatural horror thriller that grips readers from the beginning when they along with Elizabeth learn what ails the tweener. The story line is fast-paced, but character driven by the beleaguered son, the harried father, the dedicated doctor, and the evil sorceress. One of the most vile antagonists in years, malevolent Mrs. Mallory somewhat steals the show as the audience anticipates a confrontation between her and either or both (readers will keep changing who we expect to represent good) the parent and the shrink.

Harriet Klausner

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