Published: May 2015
In the wake of tragedy, John and Erma Scott are heading west in search of a new life. So when car trouble strands them in sleepy Cavus, Montana, they decide to stay for a while, charmed by the friendly residents and the surrounding ambiance. Here, they hope, is the healing balm that their marriage needs.
Then John and Erma find themselves in a fight not just to save their marriage, but their very lives. For this is no ordinary town. Its quiet streets conceal a dark and bloody secret that has slumbered for centuries. Now, that secret is awake . . . and it’s hungry.
Like a slow infection, evil is spreading through Cavus. Soon John and Erma—along with the local sheriff, an undocumented immigrant, a traumatized teenage girl, and an old man with terrible secrets of his own—must join together to battle an all-consuming force that has set its sights on its prey: the entire human race.
“Both the evil that suffuses the pages of Consumption and the motley gang of innocents who defend against it are much more interesting than those usually found in your average scare fare. Solid writing elevates this imaginative fright-fest from an invigorating new voice.”—Sophie Littlefield, bestselling author of the Aftertime series
Cavus, Montana is a, seemingly, regular small town. There's the gossips, the mailmen, the immigrants, the plant workers, the church goers etc. And then there's the epic evil lying in wait.
John and Erma's car breaks down near Cavus. Unhappy in their marriage and life, they're stuck together in Montana until their car is fixed. Almost instantly, they're sucked into the light-hearted celebration surrounding of the Black Squirrel Festival, and the obvious charm of small-town-living. Like most horror stories, this is just the beginning. From here, disaster strikes!
The publisher Hydra, likes their gore and "Consumption" does not disappoint. Herrman's debut novel specializes in vulgarity, violence and an awesome mystery. The instant Erma and John arrived (no, they're not 60 like I originally assessed), the reader is aware that something is off. The town, though perfect, has flaws that don't run along the lines of bad politics. Something dark lingers, controls and is making a dramatic comeback.
I really liked the flashbacks to the evil source's beginnings when regarding Cavus, Montana. I thought there might be more flashbacks but the furthest we see is late 1800's. I did think there were a few plot holes regarding this ultimate evil but I don't want to spoiler it for you.
Ultimately, the characters were okay though I didn't find myself rooting for any of them. If they died, I wasn't heartbroken but it moved the story forward at a fast-pace. There isn't a dull moment! There's mystery, a build-up and a bloodbath without being redundant or boring.
There were exhilarating moments and even the ultimate evil attempts to gain a human perspective on its own actions. This is something which I'd found fascinating.