Book Review: Remnants of the Damned

cover-review-remnants of the damnedTitle: Remnants of the Damned [Abyssal Sanctuary 1]

Author: Gavin Hetherington

Genre: Horror, New Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Mystery, Suspense

Rating: 1 Star




There has always been something wrong with the sinister and secluded town of Lakefield View. For one, people get murdered on the streets and nobody does anything about it. Even if they hear their screams curse the night skies, the number of saints has diminished. But it isn’t the sick and twisted residents of Lakefield View that are the ones who you should avoid… it’s the killers, the psychopaths, the witches and the monsters you should watch out for.

Five unsuspecting workers of a picturesque café get the shock of their lives when a family member is killed before their eyes. A chain of events ensue and they are all catapulted down a spiraling road of mystery and magic, each struggling to overcome constant obstacles that threaten their lives and the safety of their families. As the mystery progresses and the secrets get darker, the friends find it harder and harder to keep their heads above water.

The only thing worse than being alone in the dark, is finding out you’re not!


Did not finish. I hate not finishing books, and I hate writing reviews for books I don’t finish—because I know that people are going to harass me over it. It happens every single time…. but I’m going to write this review anyway because I believe that any time a reader can’t get through a book, there’s usually a good reason. As a reviewer, it is my obligation to give my opinion to other readers out there and let them know the pitfalls and triumphs of the books I review. You may agree with me, you may not, but this is my personal opinion.

To be frank, this book, in my opinion, was awful. How awful? I gave up  2 1/2 pages in—that may literally be the quickest I’ve ever given up on a book. Go ahead, take the time to cry foul and argue that it’s not fair of me to say a book sucks without having read the whole thing. I’ll wait. Here’s the thing… whatever the plot was, however wonderfully written the characters may have been, I couldn’t get past those first 2 1/2 pages. The sentence structure was convoluted, and littered with both run-on sentences and fragments. The wording was odd and had a disjointed feel to it, and the words used were often misused and ill-placed.

I am a firm believer that narrative should practically disappear. It should be effortless and flow from one idea to the next in such a way that you forget you’re reading a book. Instead, you become part of the story for a few short hours. I didn’t get that with this book. You don’t have to take my word for it—I have some quotes to share.

The stories began when the town was first founded one thousand years ago. One particular urban legend is that once you leave the town and return, you’re doomed to die. In fact, just stepping foot in Lakefield View is enough to curse a soul to a promised home in the ground.

There is a monster. It cloaks itself with a human identity. There are many monsters that live in the shadows, but only one is solely responsible for the fate of this abyssal sanctuary.

The moon descends a haunting glow on the spacious town that is locked in by miles and miles of evocative trees.

With gorgeous houses lining the street, the residents milk the opportunity to brag about their homes. Not all of the people who live there are smug and condescending, but the majority have a death wish.

These are just a few lines from the first two pages. It’s hard to explain exactly why the narrative feels so off to me—perhaps because it’s hard to understand what the author was trying to tell us. The paragraphs contained several disjointed thoughts at once, often without anything to tie them together. Attention was drawn to certain aspects of the story (like the monster) only to be glossed over and ignored further down the page. I guess the word I’m looking for to describe the narrative is CHAOTIC.

There are probably people out there that will be able to get through this book and thoroughly enjoy it far more than I did. Speaking only for myself, I couldn’t stomach it. After 2 1/2 pages I had no interest in reading on to the third page, let alone the rest of the book, and I’m not going to waste my time forcing myself to read a book I obviously have no interest in. If you’re interested in reading this story I would suggest taking a look at the preview on Amazon first to determine if it’s something your interested in. As for me, well, this just wasn’t my cup of tea, so I’m going to move on. I honestly wish I had liked it more than I did, but you know, not every book is for every person.

5 thoughts on “Book Review: Remnants of the Damned

  1. Pingback: Weekend Wrap-Up #3 | Author Unpublished

  2. Hey. I’m so sorry you didn’t enjoy what you read of the book. I never agree with authors replying to reviews but I do get disheartened when I see someone has wasted their time with my book and I feel the need to apologise. It’s completely my fault though, not yours so I understand your reaction. I have just paid for a professional editor to go through the book though so hopefully the book will be improved. Always appreciate any feedback, especially the negative ones as they help so much! Thank you and again I apologise.

    Have a great day, Gavin Hetherington.


    • Oh no, please don’t feel the need to apologize. Not every book is for every person, but of course the flip side to that is, every book is for someone. This one wasn’t for me, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t someone out there who will enjoy it to it’s fullest–so please, don’t apologize. I do think a good editor will do you a great service towards making it all that it can be, though. I sincerely wish you the best with your next draft!


  3. In my humble opinion, I like seeing a negative review every once and a while. It’s tough, I appreciate that, but it’s honest. So, thank you for your honesty. 🙂


    • Haha, welcome. I hate writing them honestly–because I do usually get a lot of hate back from it (especially from the author and their loyal followers), but I know when I go looking for books, negative reviews are the first ones I check. Unlike positive reviews, it’s much easier to tell when someone’s actually read the book or just being a brat, so it’s easier to see what the real problems with the story may be ahead of time, and ignore the books that fall into my worst pet peeves–so I shall continue to write them regardless of the consequences. Thank goodness it’s not often.

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