09 March 2019

Review || The Beast of Nightfall Lodge: The Institute for Singular Antiquities Book II


A mysterious explorer hires a team of adventurers to join him in a hunt for a monstrous beast, in this rip-roaring sequel to Fury From the Tomb. 

When Egyptologist Rom Hardy receives a strange letter from his old friend, the bounty-hunting sniper Rex McTroy, he finds himself drawn into a chilling mystery. In the mountains of New Mexico, a bloodthirsty creature is on the loose, leaving a trail of bodies in its wake. Now, a wealthy big game hunter has offered a staggering reward for its capture, and Rom's patron - the headstrong and brilliant Evangeline Waterston - has signed the team up for the challenge. Awaiting them are blizzards, cold-blooded trappers, remorseless hunters, a mad doctor, wild animals and a monster so fearsome and terrifying, it must be a legend come to life.


First of all, I must give homage to creator Daniel Strange to the cover artwork. After all, that's what drew me to want to read The Beast of Nightfall Lodge. 

I came for the art. I stayed for the story. 

If Indiana Jones and Clint Eastwood had a love child, it would be this book. With plenty of adventure, horror, and action, this western-horror mashup is gleefully and unabashedly fun.

Rom Hardy is neither Indiana Jones nor Clint Eastwood. In fact, he's more like Indiana's father, but with less excitement. Ok, Rom is boring. Kinda stodgy in fact, but that was part of his charm. He's the sleuther here. The "who-done-it" finder-outer. The rest of his team have their own niche as well. Rex McTroy is the rough and tumble, adrenaline junkie; Dr. Yong Wu, the medical researcher; Evangeline Waterston, the benefactor. Together, they form the Waterston Institute for Singular Antiquities, and they have a mystery to solve. 

There's no denying the action and adventure lure of The Beast of Nightfall Lodge. It begins placidly enough with a comfortable setting, some drinks, and Evangeline coaxing Rom to recall what befell them at Nightfall Lodge. From there it quickly escalates into a grand adventure filled with a myriad of colorful characters, suspenseful situations, thrills, chills, and quite a bit of gore splashed throughout. Hurling the characters from one peril to the next, the plot speeds through at a breakneck pace only to be brought plodding down occasionally by Rom's internal monologues. 

If you're looking for a new take on pulp adventure, you can't go wrong with S.A. Sidor's The Beast of Nightfall Lodge. I had not read The Fury from the Tomb, which is the first novel of Rom and his crew, but you'd better believe it's on my TBR!