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They by J. F. Gonzalez
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While THEY was a good book, it wasn't a great book. There were aspects that I enjoyed but there were also a few things that detracted from that enjoyment. The story follows Vince Walters.

It has been a year since his wife died in a car accident and Vince is starting to get back to a normal life. However, his mother is killed in a viscious manner and Vince must go back to his childhood home to handle her affairs. Vince stopped talking to his mother years ago due in part to her religious fanaticism and Vince's repressed upbringing. Shortly after his return, Vince is approached by Frank Black, a childhood friend who awakens odd memories from Vince's past. And this is where the mysteries and conspiracies about Frank's and Vince's past begins.

I suppose I should start with the good. The book was well written with believable characters who mostly reacted as you would think. There was a ton of research performed to cover the various topics and religions; that research and depth of knowledge was very obvious. It was nice to see Corporate Financial as a unifying thread within the mythos created by Gonzalez; the corporation was the source of problems in other books so its return was welcome. And as a total side, I enjoyed that parts of the book were based in Orange County in California. I lived in the area for years and it was cool to know all the areas the characters visited. My biggest problem with THEY was the conspiracy, specifically following the conspiracy and the depth of it. There was a large chunk of the middle of the book where dozens of characters were introduced along with all of their ties to each other and to the conspiracy. I had a hard time remembering who was who and why they were important. I suppose it was necessary to show the complexity of the conspiracy but I got lost during this part. And considering the heart of the book is the conspiracy and They who are part of the conspiracy, it meant that I was lost during key parts of the book. I also wasn't completely happy with the epilogue. The character that was included there was changed from the rest of the book and not acting like himself. And it didn't seem like a change that was part of his character growth. All told, I still enjoyed the book but I would not classify it as Gonzalez's best work. For that, I would point to SURVIVOR. I look forward to continuing through the rest of Gonzalez's books. ( )
  dagon12 | Dec 9, 2017 |
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They walk among us unnoticed, unassuming.

A year after the auto accident that killed his wife, Vince Walters is finally beginning to move forward with his life. With the support of friends, he's digging back into his career and even beginning to date again.

When his estranged mother, Maggie Walters, is murdered, Vince is stunned by the hideous nature of the crime. Maggie lived a quiet life in a small, rural, Pennsylvania town, attending church, reading the Bible, and subscribing to an increasingly paranoid view of the End Times as prophesied in The Book of Revelations. Her brutal killing, which bears all the signs of being related to a sinister satanic cult, is inexplicable given her life of faith.

However, a visit from a childhood playmate confirms what Vince is beginning to uncover about his mother's past: that she was involved with a cult during his early childhood, but later defected and went into hiding with him. As hard as Maggie worked to bury her dark past, it seems that they found her.

Now they've found Vince. And this time, they are not going to give him up.

They have plans for him.
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