"Red Right Hand (The Mythos War)" Book Review
Written by Jennifer Turner
Published by Tor Books
Written by Levi Black
2016, 304 pages, Fiction
Released on July 26th, 2016
I'm going to be honest and say that Red Right Hand was a hard one to read and review. For starters, it's excessively gory. I am one of those rare horror fans that can't stand gore. It's the reason I have only watched the first 20 minutes of Wrong Turn and have sworn off all the sequels. I had to put the book down more than a couple of times during reading.
This macabre tale centers on Charlotte Tristan Moore, a very disturbed young woman who unwillingly becomes the acolyte of the mysterious Man in Black. The Man in Black, also known as The Crawling Chaos, has tasked her to hunt and kill his kind and takes her boyfriend with him as a bargaining chip should she refuse. Aside from the gore, I like this tale a lot more than I thought I would. There's a great twist at the end and even adds a rape as a backstory that isn't exploitive like a lot of literature using that trope would be.
It's hard to like both the protagonist and antagonist. Charlotte – a.k.a. Charlie – just whines a lot and didn't really grab my interest until the end when she gets an upgrade in badassery and stops feeling sorry for herself. The Man in Black is just kind of there; he does evil things and throws out a quip or two. He doesn't impact the tale even though that is the point of this whole character.
Charlie is the niece of H.P. Lovecraft, and Cthlulu actually shows up midway into the story. I find this humorous, as this is the third Lovecraftian tale I have reviewed for HorrorTalk and I have yet to read Lovecraft's works. I feel bad because I'm sure I'm missing subtle nuances in this book that fans of the author would appreciate. I always have this feeling that I won't be considered a true horror fan until I pop my Lovecraft cherry.
Red Right Hand is gory, yes but it's also action packed, funny, has enough exaggerated genitalia to entertain the whole family and immediately pulls you into the story. There is simply not a dull moment in the book although there are a few stomach-cringing ones. I highly recommended whether or not you read Lovecraft. As Levi Black has obviously left it open for a sequel, and I would read it as I'm curious to what further adventures Charlotte and the Man in Black have for us.