Violence, Gore, Grief, Major Character Death
Norman, an Egyptologist, leads a team of researchers to the tomb of Kiya, a mysterious, lost queen of Egypt. For years, locals have refused to reveal the location of her final resting place, fearing it to be cursed. Norman and his companions don’t believe in any such curse… until they find themselves trapped inside with no way out. And they aren’t alone.
The Eater of Gods is straightforward. It gives the reader exactly what they want from a mummy story. Not that its simplicity makes it any less compelling. The plot is well-paced and balances action with suspense and surprisingly touching moments of emotion. There is nothing particularly twisty or tricky about the novel, but it’s enjoyable nonetheless.
Franklin’s characterization is the star of the show. He creates a small, but diverse cast of characters. Each has a distinct personality conveyed through clever use of dialogue and action. From the lecherous professor (who gets what he deserves) to an over-eager graduate student, to Norman himself, a grieving and broken man fulfilling his wife’s dying wish. It is a fairly large list of characters for such a short and small-scale story, but Franklin manages to craft connections to each of them so that we care about their well-being.
Taking place almost entirely within Kiya’s tomb, The Eater of Gods feels at once both claustrophobic and expansive. The tomb is a maze of tunnels designed not to keep grave robbers out, but to keep something else in. Behind every corner is another trap waiting to spring… Or have they been in this room before?
While The Eater of Gods is a straightforward mummy horror story, the novel is infused with grief. As Norman works through his own emotions regarding the death of his wife and her unfulfilled desire to study the tomb of Kiya, readers also feel the weight of his issues. The Eater of Gods is a sort of love story in that way. While the terror of the tomb is the forefront of the novel, the anguish, and hopelessness that run throughout give it heart.
If you’re looking for a quick, easy read that delivers exactly what’s promised, check out Dan Franklin’s The Eater of Gods.