Paul Hatzis was tired of life in San Francisco, his wife had left him to join a cult and he feels American culture is violent and delusional. Paul is in search of a simpler life and has decided to go to the Greek island of Vóunos to find it. He rents out a small old house but what he doesn’t know is that the house has a dark history.
Seventy years ago master of the dark arts, Dafyd along with a seer named Magda and Klaus a delusional SS colonel practiced black magic there. They killed some of the locals and in their final ritual they made a deal with outer hell and gave up their bodies to serve 70 years in hell. In exchange for their service they will be given new bodies and become immortals on Earth and the souls of the three bodies they inhabit will spend eternity in hell.
I found it hard writing a description of this book because there is so much depth to the story its hard to put into words. I guess I would have to say that Black Easter by Dario Ciriello is an intellectual horror novel. I’ve read many books that have a plot line like this but what makes this story different is how its told.
As Paul’s story begins you also hear the story of Magda, Klaus and Dafyd. The story starts in the present and keeps going back to tell the story of the former owners of the house. You think this is going to be your classic good versus evil story but in the beginning it’s not. You get the impression that Dafyd and Magda aren’t evil, they are in search of knowledge. Klaus is evil but he finds redemption(sort of). Then we get to find out more about what hell is like and it’s not the kind of place you would think it is.(I would love to say more but I don’t want to give it away.)
This brings me to one of the things that I liked about the book, I figured that Dario wouldn’t get into the description of hell but he does and I loved the concept behind it and hearing the rituals that the three characters used to get there. I loved the characters in the book and I liked how the Greek island itself is a character as you get into how the people on the island live and act. The best part of the book is how the characters in danger act when they are faced with the prospect of death. At this point the story does become good versus evil and you see that what was presented in the beginning wasn’t the thing that should be feared(read it you’ll understand).
Black Easter is truly an excellent read that had me still thinking about it after I was done reading. If you are into horror novels that have a lot of jump scares or lots of violence(it does have violence but it’s not what drives the story) you might not like this. That being said there we’re some scenes in this book where it comes across like a haunted house story. This is a great novel that will have you pondering life’s mysteries and what evil really is. I love that some of the characters question how evil can be stronger than good but as they question themselves they find the answers that they are looking for. I would love to elaborate on that statement but it would be better if you just bought Black Easter and read it.