Tuesday, February 24, 2015

recent read; Congregations of the Dead

Congregations of the Dead is the second novel by James A. Moore and Charles R. Rutledge featuring the duo of sheriff Carl Price and private investigator Wade Griffin.

Price and Griffin are investigating real world issues – missing girls, forced prostitution and other dark, unsavory elements of humanity. Tangentially, they clip the world of the supernatural and find themselves facing a vampire and his congregation, as well as real world criminal organizations.

Oh, and those Moon-eyes' in-bred Blackbournes from the first novel (which you don't need to read first, but should anyway; Blind Shadows) are keeping tabs on Price, too. Add to that an ex-wife (for Price) and the smothering heat & humidity of a Georgia summer, and our heroes are quite piled upon by the time we reach the crescendo of this tale.

Occultist Carter DeCamp and his protege Charon return here, as well - offering occult advice, assistance and weaponry.

I really like the vampires in this story. I really enjoyed the twist of Reverend Lazarus Cotton as a Holy Roller, fire & brimstone revival preacher who earnestly believes his vampirism is a gift from God. Fry, his human servant foil, was a great sociopath character (and, I love the tribute to Dwight Frye/Renfield in his name.)

Classic vampire tropes are used to solid effect. The “native soil” angle was very well played, and the rats...- oh, those rats. I don't want to say anything else for fear of spoilers.

Not unlike Buffy the Vampire Slayer t.v. series, real world issues were not directly related to the supernatural. Real world problems still exist, and supernatural issues do not change any of that. A problem is a problem, and the heroes must deal with each in its own way.

If you enjoyed Blind Shadows, you'll enjoy Congregations of the Dead, too.


  1. Sounds good, I recall your mention of the Carter DeCamp character and I've been meaning to read more of James and start Charles work.

  2. Thanks, Paul. Glad you enjoyed it. We really wanted to do some non sparkly, scary vampires.

  3. Thanks for the kind words, Paul! And glad you liked the rats. :)