The nightmare begins on a lonely country road when young bride Elaine Stern suffers "a fate worse than death" at the hands of a werewolf. Nine months later, the traumatized woman gives birth to a pair of fraternal twins. One, Jason, is frail, bespectacled and timid. The other, Joshua, is aggressive and hairy, with uncanny strength. When the boys are in their teens, they arrive at Hallerton College, a mysterious place where weird things tend to happen even before they get there. The horror goes into overdrive when a string of grisly murders paralyzes the campus.
As the body count mounts, Jason begins to suspect that his brother has inherited the curse of lycanthropy. He races to find a cure, enlisting the help of the wise, adventurous and beautiful Professor Cairo Oldewood. Also along for the ride are Cameron, a gorgeous blonde coed, and Jason's roommate Dylan, a fearless extreme-sports junkie who will do anything for a thrill, even face the full fury of a rampaging monster. Together, to save Joshua's soul, they must solve a centuries-old mystery before the full moon rises again, and before the hour of the beast is upon them!
C. Michael Forsyth's 2011 first novel Hour of the Beast was hailed by Horror Fiction Review as a “fast-paced, rip-snorting, action-packed, sexy college romp.” He is also the author of The Blood of Titans and The Identity Thief.
Forsyth is a Yale graduate with an MFA from NYU. For 10 year he was senior writer for Weekly World News, the outrageous satirical tabloid. Those stories can be found in a collection titled Batboy Lives, from Sterling Publishing. His first children’s book Brothers was published by the Greenville Family Partnership in August.
Forsyth taught film and journalism at Coker College in Hartsville, SC. He currently resides in Greenville, SC. His blog, featuring movie reviews and weird news, http://freedomshammer.wordpress.com, is visited by 300 to 500 fans daily.
I have finally been able to finish Hour of the Beast. I very much enjoyed the read. The genre is not one I normally read, unless you count Shelley’s Frankenstein. That being said, the story line grasped my attention and kept me engaged throughout. I had it almost completely read before the end of Horrorfind Weekend. I enjoyed the character development. There was no overkill, in my opinion, and gave enough to be able to ‘see’ the characters without detracting from the storyline. I also enjoyed Cairo being a main character in the story – but playing a supporting role throughout. I really enjoyed reading the coverage of the pagans understanding/beliefs of werewolves, including alchemy, and other potential theories of having Lycanthropy instead of the actual disease of Hypertrichosis, especially with the twist of identical twins and the science/mystery behind genetics.
I am sure you will have readers who ‘write the script’ (my sister is one of those) that will pick out the turn of events. For me, personally, I enjoyed the descriptive writing and the quick pace of the story. That kept me reading, especially with this genre not being one that keeps my interest. I like your writing style and the quickness in which the reader is grasped from the very onset of the story. Even with a slower pace of excitement as the story is developed, it is not so slow it lost my attention.
I hope you continue to develop Cairo’s character and keep her on her toes through a series of these types of stories. The path you took in Hour of the Beast opens up doors to taboo subjects like paganism and alchemy. It opens the doors for people to read and discover ancient beliefs that are typically not discussed, or have been lost from our society. These types of subjects, in my opinion, give insight into how our ancient folk lived their lives and explained things prior to science…this is incredibly important aspect of human history I think is lost as we advance more and more. Well done!
I don't read much horror but I think I will start reading a lot more of this genre if Michael Forsyth writes it. I did not know what to expect but this book did not disappoint. When I heard that this was a book about a werewolf that went to college, I thought it was going to be a cheesy teen wolf like tale. Boy was I wrong! This book comes out unapologetically swinging right from the start. At times this book is brutal, rough and crass but it made the college characters much more believable. I would recommend it only to an older YA crowd, but would have no problem recommending it for any adult. I really like how the author incorporated some science and real werwolf lore into the story but still kept it very fast paced. The characters were very enjoyable but it did make me want to slap around the frat boy jerks. This book is down right frightening at times in a classic horror way. The author was excellent at working in some unexpected hidden plot twists. If I only had $20 left in the world, I would spend it to buy this book. Do yourself a favor and pick it up right now!
I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.
This book started off good with an action-filled first chapter where we are introduced to Elaine on her wedding day. After that first chapter we do not see much more of Elaine until the very end of the book. The book centers around her two sons, Jason and Joshua, who are a result of her interactions with a werewolf on her wedding night.
Jason and Joshua are twins who are as different as night and day. Joshua is muscular, athletic, and has a bad temper. Jason is mild, weak, and always getting Joshua out of trouble.
Although I did like the story, I pretty much had everything figured out by about chapter 4. After getting off to a good start, the book slowed down quite a bit until the last few chapters. Overall, it was a good read.
About a 3.5/5, actually. A fun, breezy late-summer read chock full of sex and violence. Though not to be taken too seriously, C. Michael Forsyth's werewolf story delivers the literary equivalent of an early '80's horror film, reminiscent of such directors as John Carpenter, Joe Dante, or John Landis. It's clear that Forsyth is a huge fan of the genre himself, which adds a degree of enthusiasm to his writing that certainly comes through.
Stephen King once described himself as the burger and fries of the literary world. That being the case, Mr. Forsyth is pizza and beer on a Saturday night, out with your friends, discussing your favorite movies and Rock n'Roll bands. If you're looking for anything more than that, you might be disappointed, but if you take this novel in the spirit it was intended, I think you'll enjoy the ride.
I had a chance to read "Hour of the Beast" by C Michael Forsyth this past week. The book felt a bit like something you'd see at Cinemax over the weekend - a fairly straight forward werewolf story with some sex shoehorned. Not enough sex to be considered a "sexy" or "erotic" horror book, but enough to get a teenage reader excited. The book itself was decent, and it had some character characters in it. My complaints are from the fact that everything was so obviously set up from early in the book...I kept expecting a twist or a bit more depth, but it never materialized. That's not necessarily a bad thing if you're looking for a simple, quick read without much thinking involved.
My other complaint is a bit bigger and comes from the rushed feel of the last act of the story. There is some nice, if obvious, build-up over a couple of hundred pages and then a very quick climax and resolution. It almost felt like the author had reached whatever word-count he had targeted and decided to stop writing there. Not only was the storyline wrapped up a bit too quickly, but a number of the characters who could have (should have?) had more use at the end were just kind of ignore. Dylan and Cairo, in particular, could have been excised from the entire story with little to no change in things.
Overall, a decently written book - I don't hate that I read it, I was just a tad disappointed by the last quarter.
Sorry, but this reminds me too much of "American Werewolf in London" or its sequel "American Werewolf in Paris." The only twist is that it was about twins. Of course, it was obvious that Jason was the wolf. I suspected Unkle Zeke.
Two surprises, I did not suspect Elaine. And I did not expect Zeke to be 300 years old or to have chosen to become a wolf...I guess that was three.
Forsyth writes well, I just found his topic and style to be too campy. I did give it a three star because of the surprises.
P.S. I am glad Jason and Joshua left. Cameron was too wimpy to deserve either of them.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
I won this book from Goodread. It's a fun read if you like teen targeted werewolf stories. It is well written and just descriptive enough to give it a good horror feel without being overly gruesome for it's target age range. It is entertaining and will keep you reading until the end. I've read enough in my time that the ending was predictable but for the target audience this book has a great twist that will have them impatiently waiting for more. I look forward to reading more as a series is sure to follow.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
This book was a very captivating version of a werewolf tale. Too much was going on in the story that intrigued me, so I did not focus on the few grammatical & punctuation flaws. The plot had many twists and several engaging characters. It was difficult for me to put the book down before finishing and when I wasn't reading it, I constantly thought about the characters and plot. Bravo Mr. Forsyth! I look forward to reading more of your works in the future!
AHHHHH I found out from the author that there is going to be a series steming from this book :) really excitied. The last 50pgs or so had me turning pgs so fast and my head was spinning. Def ended not how i expected! A great read and can't wait for more. Picked this up at Chicago Flash Back Horror weekend 2011 :))
This is a free book from Goodreads First Reads. I read this book in 2 days-only took me that long because I was reading it at work-don't tell. Super book, great story, loved the characters, hope to read more from this author. Would highly recommend this to anyone who reads supernatural or thrillers. Thank you.
It was a pretty good book, kept me interested. I enjoyed the twists and turns. I was hoping for a better ending as it left me hanging.... HOWEVER, I just saw that there is going to be s series.... So, it isn't the end and there will be more. That's a good thing - I want to know what happens to Joshua and Cameron (there had to be more). I'm probably going to read this again.
I just finished reading this, and I thought it was really great! I was really interested in the characters, I thought it had alot of fun humor in it too. And I really love that combination of humor/horror. When I finished reading it, I definitely was hoping for a continuation with a book two.
I was blown away by this book. Such a cool take on werewolves. I would highly recommend to anyone who reads paranormal books. I won this book through the Goodreads First-reads giveaway program,"Thank You!"
I received this a first read. This was a very action pack book. Definitely a solid werewolf read. I enjoyed that the characters did grow in the story. A fun read. However just a stranded werewolf book. I would defiantly read more of this author.