“…The Archbishop…opened up Monsignor Krebs’s report which he had previously perused. It was two pages long, generously spaced with broad margins. The first sentence read in bold face: “Billy Wagner shows all the classic signs of demonic possession. “
Thus the preparations for exorcism of Little Billy Wagner ensues.
The frantic parents of Little Billy Wagner are at a loss as to what to do when their son shows signs of demonic possession. When the medical community can offer no answers, they turn to their Catholic Church. The Archbishop a prominent hawk in the war on Satan is more than willing to help the Wagners. Though in precarious health ( His bypasses had bypasses ), he always knew The Evil One would show up on his watch and he s now ready to send in the exorcists. But first, the Church has to determine whether Little Billy Wagner is demonically possessed. Enter the handsome Father Leopold Mackenzie.
Father Leo wants to be a priest. He believes God wants him to be a good priest. He aspires to return to a parish in Bolivia where he spent many happy days in his favorite llama-wool sweater and was accepted by the kind Boliviano parishioners. To make this happen, he just needs to do a good job on the Billy Wagner matter and keep the lovely Veronica Fields, from the parish s conversion class, far away from him and in moments of weakness not think of ways to make her his rectory mate.
Father Leo visits the Wagners and soon determines that Little Billy is clearly possessed, but, the question is, by what? Knowing an underlying medical cause must first be ruled out, Father Leo starts gathering information and medical reports and hires the famed Jesuit psychiatrist, the dhoti-wearing Father Caspar Wieland, MD/PhD/SJ. Meanwhile, the Archbishop gathers his exorcism team (including bringing in ex-special forces Monsignor Krebs, despite his handling of the exorcism in The River City Delirium Tremens Burro Incident ) and prepares to make the case to the Vatican to get the authority to send in the exorcists. Can Father Leo stop a Rush to Exorcism before it s too late? Or is Little Billy demonically possessed, and by trying to stop the exorcism, is Father Leo allowing Satan and his legion into America s heartland?
Horror is one of my most favourite genre and I wanted to read a chilling ghost story in these hot summer days.
I was delighted to find this book at that time. The blurb of the book was everything that I needed. However when I checked some reviews I read that this book is pretty humorous. I was intrigued to know how the author has blended humour with horror as when you see the word Exorcism you inevitably remember the movie Exorcist. But I found out as I read.
The Archbishop’s faith in both God and Devil is profound and he strongly believes that Satan lives among us through the travesties called Phones. Otherwise anyone would never show the audacity to be bored during a sermon and text to others, SITTING IN THE FRONT ROW. So when he found out about Little Billy Wagner’s unusual behaviour, his enormous strength at the age of 12, his extreme addiction to videogames(probably Devil’s shadow comes from them), his more mature voice, his self-harm and finally the pentagram on the wall. Archbishop is convinced and the boy needed to be Exorcised.
Father Leo is sent to investigate and wanted the boy to be checked by physicians first but later after some close calls from the boy he is ensured about the demonic possession. So after granting permission from Vatican somewhat a troop of armed priests enter the Wagner household. Monsignor Krebs (who firmly believes in the power of brawn than brain) invites himself and everything gets…well…messy.
But what happens!! Sorry no spoilers. You have to read it yourself.
- The book is essentially a dark comedy. Irony and Satire are the weapons to shred the corruption and duality in the churches. I was tickled all through the book.
- Brilliant characterization.
- Amazing plot construction.
- Witty diction.
- Perfect blend of humour and horror(or no-horror)
Sometimes unusually lengthy backstories of the characters. They are long winded and seemed unnecessary to me as the strings of incidents that were occurring were broken continuously. I seem to be forgetting where I was before the backstory started. They just added to the page numbers. It could have been avoided.
But in a nutshell this book is very much enjoyable. 4 stars well deserved.
Thanks to the author Francis J Flynn and Booktasters for the opportunity to read and review this book.
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