Author: Mike Dellosso
Publisher: Realms (March 3, 2009)
My Rating: ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
SCREAM kicks off with nightmarish screams that carry during a phone conversation between Mark Stone and his friend Jeff. Moments later, Jeff dies in a fiery crash. When it happens again and again, and it’s apparent the screams are not freak occurrences, Mark is hell bent on trying to save people from dying. Even his father falls victim to the screams. Mark is able to spend a few last hours with him, but his father is terrified of the hell that awaits for having lived in the façade of righteousness but he still dies lost.
Because the book delves into eternal consequences for not committing to the Lord, it can’t shake a somewhat preachy tone. But this is mostly overshadowed with a sympathetic kidnapper who’s thrown into the mix. The kidnapper longs to make four women pay for the death of his first love. It doesn’t matter that they’re not THE four. Someone has to pay. And Mark’s estranged wife falls into his clutches. If Mark weren’t tortured enough by his wife’s refusal to come back home and forgive him for breaking their vows, he’s further alarmed when she calls and says she’s been kidnapped. When he hears the dreaded screams, he races to try and save her against both an unknown assailant and an eternity of torment. The climax is excellent and gripping, a battle in which not everyone survives. The only big drawback for me was the presence of the screams without a specific reason. I don’t mind supernatural elements, but the book never delves into why Mark suddenly began hearing screams and why they suddenly stopped. They were just there and then not. Overall though, this was a good read.