There is a monster sleeping deep inside of you, and The Whisper King is coming to wake it up…and rip it out!
My name is David Kinder. And this is my story… every goddamn bloodstained word of it.
About 25 years ago when I was six my parents died in a car crash. I was bounced around a few state homes until they finally settled me at Meripitt Hill, an orphanage just outside of Lansing, Michigan. It was there that the shadows started visiting me. Not normal shadows. These shadows moved on their own accord, and whispered strange, alien things to me. Scared the piss out of me.
Wasn’t until Donna Elizondo moved to Meripitt Hill that my life started to actually become bearable. She became my best friend. Taught me to love music and to dance. That kept the shadows away. That kept me safe.
That year we were an epic story of two. We danced. We laughed. Hell, I suspect I was falling in love with her, if kids could really know what love is.
But then she was taken away from me. Adopted.
That’s when the shadows returned for me. That’s when they took me to the Shadow Mountains to serve the Whisper King.
For 25 years I learned how to fight. How to kill. I even learned how to transform myself into a Cuthach…a monster. There were thousands of us being trained there. Thousands of us learning to reach deep inside and unleash the monsters in our guts.
When a spot opened in the Whisper King’s elite guard, the Silent Heart, I was chosen to fill it. But first I had to take one final test. A test that would determine once and for all if I was destined to be man or monster.
Have you ever picked up a book and found yourself kind of drawn in after just a few pages? This is the experience I had while reading this book. For some reason, I just couldn’t tear my eyes away. The story had an easy going feel about it and in a way, David’s attitude as a young child reminded me of my own childhood and how the kids in my neighborhood acted when adults weren’t around.
In fact, I found myself snickering every time his little eight year old mouth spouted out a cuss word. Not only did he have a potty mouth, but he was quick witted and brash.
“Miss your girlfriend?” Timmy Swanson teased as he sat down across from me.
I continued staring down at the oatmeal as I stirred. “No, Timmy, I don’t miss your mom. She farts when I fuck her.”
Timmy gasped, as did several other children who had gathered around us. Some of them snickered. Others snorted with disgust and moved on.
“My mom is dead!” Timmy yelled.
“Well, I did take her to Heaven.” I replied, still looking down at my oatmeal.
This is ironic since I know if I ever heard my nine year old speak like that, I’d smack him silly. But it still reminded me of a boy I grew up with, who used to talk like that.
The story reminded me a bit of a twisted version of Peter Pan, particularly in the way the Whisper King (or as he is known in the Shadow Mountains, Cogar Rí) uses the shadows to kidnap children. Well, I suppose the word kidnap is a bit strong, as each child is given the opportunity to choose to leave their world behind. But the boys that are targeted all have something in common, their lives are completely miserable. For David, the loss of his parents, the group home’s handyman, Lloyd, and his best friend, Donna, leaves him with nothing left to lose and he gives himself over after fighting off the whispering shadows for over two years.
By embracing the monster, aka Cuthach, within, David quickly proves himself to be a force to be reckoned with in the shadow of the Whisper King’s domain. He stands up to the biggest bully in his cabin on the first day and then to his pedophile trainer on the second day. But being special in a world full of monsters isn’t always a good thing and David finds himself in over his head from time to time. But as he grows stronger and more knowledgeable, the Whisper King’s interest increases and when a spot opens up on the elite guard, Lán Croi or the Silent Heart, he’s chosen to not only join but lead them. But when it comes time to pass his final test, he realizes that he is unwilling to give into the Whisper King’s desires. I enjoy this, as it proves what I initially thought, that David is a true antihero.
All in all, I must admit I really enjoyed this dark fantasy and I would highly recommend this book to any one who likes this type of book. My only warning is that at one point, David repeats a joke that may have pushed my tolerance of his behavior a bit too far. Actually, it’s just a gross joke and I found myself gagging as I read it. But as long as you have a good (and dark) sense of humor, you’ll enjoy this book.
Reviewer’s Note: I received this book in exchange for an honest review.
Where you can pick up this book
|Barnes & Noble Link||www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-whisper-king-wil-radcliffe/1121901974?ean=2940151911269|
About the Author
Wil Radcliffe first met the Whisper King when he was five-years-old. He heard the rasping voice late one night, pulling him from a fitful and bitter slumber. It was then this mysterious tyrant charged young Wil with a lifelong mission…to terrify his fellow mortals with tales of deep, primal horror.
And Wil has obeyed.
Because he hopes the Whisper King has beer.
And while he waits for alcoholic rewards he lives a fairly ordinary life with his wife, daughter, and son in some cold, dark place in a realm ringed by skeletal trees and murky lakes. On some maps it is called “Michigan.”