Third installment in creature feature series provides more than meets the eye development to both characters and plot
When a new book series is published and it promises to entertain right out of the gate, it can be difficult to wait for the next book to be published. For readers who have been following author J.P. Barnett, that wait has been pretty much nonexistent for, within a single year, he has released three books in his creature feature suspense Lorestalker Series. He began the year with The Beast of Rose Valley, followed up with a strong sequel in the summer with The Kraken of Cape Madre, and to end 2019, readers can now read The Witch of Gray’s Point.
Miriam Brooks is a hero in the eyes of all who witnessed her take down the Kraken in Cape Madre. While her dangerous adventure ended in success, her final grades of the semester could end in failure. She travels to an abandoned house in the desert in the hopes of catching up on her studies; however, the empty quiet desert is not as empty as it appears to be. A creature of unknown nature stalks her with the ability to change its shape and form at will. Miriam quickly forgets the books as she finds her hands full with this dangerous threat, but another problem arrives when she comes face to face with the man she has been trying to avoid: her father. Her father is on the hunt for the shapeshifting creature, as well, with the help of two new assistants. While Miriam refuses to work with her father and face the demons of her past, the danger they all find themselves in may leave her no choice.
Only three books in and already it is exciting to know what will happen next as Barnett continues his series of unknown length. He started out strong, capturing readers’ attention with his fast-paced storytelling and continuous mystery behind his creature in The Beast of Rose Valley. He impressed with his second installment, The Kraken of Cape Madre, as he revealed the monster right away, yet still maintained its mystery while, at the same time, providing amazing development for his characters. Now, with the recent release of The Witch of Gray’s Point, Barnett, once again, does not fail to disappoint, offering yet another enticing addition to his Lorestalker Series.
The pace in this installment has slowed down quite a bit compared to his first two stories, but it has done so to further develop his characters and the plot moving forward in the series. When it comes to monsters and beasts and creatures, many people are scared because of how these things look or act. For some, it is right to fear these creatures because they could have evil intent and wish to harm others intentionally. But then think about other stories such as Frankenstein, Beauty and the Beast, the Witcher Series, The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Just because something or someone looks scary does not make them a monster to fear. Perhaps there is more to them than meets the eye. A very similar theme goes along with The Witch of Gray’s Point as the main creature focus, with the ability to shapeshift, is definitely physically more than meets the eye; however, as readers progress through the story, they will see that there is more to this creature on the inside than originally believed.
When it comes to characters, Barnett is always on par when it comes to developing them. The main heroine Miriam developed beautifully and realistically in The Kraken of Cape Madre. She develops even more in The Witch of Gray’s Point in even more beautiful and realistic ways. She is such a headstrong character and does not accept help from others. She has learned to accept help since her encounter with the Kraken, but she has yet to learn how to fully trust and rely on others to help her. The events that happen in this installment of the series force Miriam to do just that and while she tries to fight against it, she comes to the realization that everyone needs help from others from time to time. Readers also get to see her interact with her father, Skylar, who readers have not seen since book one, but it is great to see the development in not only their relationship, but also in Skylar himself.
With three books in a single year, Barnett is off to a fantastic start in his writing career. His Lorestalker Series has been one to watch out for as each book so far has given readers a new monster of folklore to chase after, new characters to follow as they beautifully develop, and a whole new story to become captivated with. For lovers of myths, folklore, and the macabre, Barnett is the author to follow and, with three books already published, there is plenty of material to read. His most recent release, The Witch of Gray’s Point, adds an excellent installment to the series as a whole. While it does not necessarily end on a cliff hanger, not all is what it seems to be. Be on the lookout for the next book in Barnett’s series published by Evolved Publishing. 2020 should prove to be an excellent year to see what happens next.
Originally published at http://rolloutreviews.com on December 5, 2019.