"Bad Paths" by Justin Behrens is a very unique supernatural thriller. The book starts out with the main character Greg Dameron returning to Lost Haven, Iowa, after receiving word of his mother’s death. Once in the small town, he finds that his family name carries a lot of power and invokes fear in the residents of the area. This fact is first revealed to us in a bar when Greg is punched by a local resident. Once they found out who Greg is, the girlfriend of the aggressor is terrified as to what is going to become of her boyfriend.
Slowly the reader finds out that things just aren’t normal for the Dameron family. This is revealed through many very graphic, descriptive passages. There is a lot of gore in the writing and some of the horrific details will make your stomach churn. If you are into that type of novel, then this book is definitely for you! If you have a weak stomach and don’t like reading about terrible acts of violence, then you should not even pick up the book because that is what the bulk of the story consists of.
I found the novel to be an easy one to get drawn into in the beginning as the writing was strong and intriguing. There were times towards the end of "Bad Paths" that I wasn’t as into the book and my interest wavered. All in all, however, Behrens debut novel is worth a read to anyone looking for a fresh, new author in the horror genre.
Reviewed by Kam Aures for Rebeccasreads.com (08/09)