Please note that I received this book via NetGalley. This did not affect my rating or review.
Not much to say about this besides this was not a book for me. It dragged. Endlessly. I stopped and started this thing about a dozen times and finally finished it because I got tired of seeing it on my NetGalley dashboard. It's a horror novel set during World War I that had way too much dialogue. I mean to the point that I went, please shut up. All of you. Also I feel like I have seen this book played out via movies before. I think at one point I started Googling things and then realized it didn't matter cause I just didn't like this book. It also appears to have been updated and re-released every year according to Goodreads which to me was another bad sign that I wish I had known about before clicking on the damn request button. Mental note, in 2020 I am going to research books before getting click happy on NetGalley.
"The Damned" is the first book in "The Darkest Hand" trilogy. Taking place in 1914 in the city of Arras, a priest is murdered. The Catholic Inquisition (I guess they are still a thing at this point, no, I am not looking that up to see if that's true or just literary license) sends one of their inquisitors, Poldek Tacit (seriously that name was hilariously awful) to investigate. While this is going on with Poldek (seriously, that name sucks) trying to investigate, British and German forces are fighting across No Man's Land.
I don't even know what to say here. Poldek is found by the Church after he is found holding on to his mother who was murdered and raped. So yeah, we are still using the rape and death of a woman to "mold" men. Cause if women were not there to develop men what good are we? Can we stop doing this in 2020? I would love it. Thank you.
There's also another character named Sandrine who is trying to get a soldier (British) Henry to leave the area. Yeah it sounds like I just got booted into another book there didn't it? This is the whole freaking book. A lot of stuff happening that doesn't seem connected that drags on forever.
The writing was so so and the flow was awful. It takes too long to get to the whole who are the damned thing and of course I guessed at it because I have read horror books before. I don't mind if books revel in cliches, but at least make it worth my time.
The setting of the book as I said above is during World War I. There was so much information being thrown at me I just wanted to scream at some point. I am not one of those people who love to read endless books or watch movies about World War I or World War II. Also every time I read "No Man's Land" I kept thinking of the Wonder Woman scene depicting that place and then started to wish I was just watching that movie all over again (though the third act is a mess).
I have zero intention of reading books number 2 or 3.