On Sale: June 09, 2015
Published by : Hydra
Welcome to Mercy House, a state-of-the-art retirement home that appears perfectly crisp, clean, and orderly . . . but nothing could be farther from the truth. In Adam Cesare’s thrilling novel, the residents will find little mercy—only a shocking eruption of unfathomable horror.
Harriet Laurel notices the odor at Mercy House as soon as she sets foot inside, brought there against her will by her son, Don, and his wife, Nikki. In the early stages of dementia, Harriet has grown resentful of Nikki, blaming her daughter-in-law for failing to supply grandchildren. Yet even Harriet must admit that her mind becomes clearer as soon as she crosses the threshold. If it wasn’t for that annoying smell.
Arnold Piper is an eighty-five-year-old ex-Marine, a proud man who has cared for himself his whole life. But no longer. Betrayed by his aging body, Arnold is learning that the trials he survived long ago in war-torn Korea pale beside the daily indignities of growing old. Little does he know that his greatest nightmares are still ahead of him.
Sarah Campbell is an idealistic nurse whose compassion has been stretched to the breaking point at the chronically understaffed facility that is Mercy House. But now Sarah’s list of unpleasant duties is about to take a terrifying turn. For something wicked is brewing in Mercy House. Something dark and rotten . . . and deadly.
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Mercy House is where the elderly go to spend the last of their days. Many people know that once they are there, they are not going to leave. Harriet is well aware of this fact when her son and daughter-in-law go to drop her off there. Harriet has Pick’s disease and it is slowly deteriorating her brain. Harriet and her son Don and daughter and law Nikki notice that something is wrong with the residents of Mercy House soon after they arrive. The residents have begun to heal, no longer suffering from the effect of old age; they are now strong, agile and out for blood of the younger.
This book started out really strong for me from the prologue where the after effects are seen, something is terribly wrong in a retirement home, a setting that scares some people anyway, but no one would guess what these residents are up to. The suspense did build for me as I got to know some of the resident’s characters and their back story, it was hard to imagine anyone suffering in a retirement home and I almost felt like rooting for them as their afflictions healed. However, there was excessive gore, sex and brutality through the majority of the book. Some of it bothered me a little, some of it didn’t, and it will depend on who you are if you will like this at all. My biggest peeve though was that the reason for the resident’s change is not explained. I thought that it may be alluded to with a strange smell and a shadow figure, but it wasn’t revealed.
Adam Cesare is a New Yorker who lives in Philadelphia. He studied English and film at Boston University. His books include Video Night, The Summer Job, Zero Lives Remaining, and Tribesmen. His nonfiction has appeared in Paracinema, The Los Angeles Review of Books, and other venues.