Staff Review: "We Sold Our Souls "
Kris bought her first electric guitar with her savings, never imaging that she would eventually become the guitarist for a semi-famous heavy metal band. But on the eve of their big break, the lead singer, Terry, did something more horrible than selling out, and while he went on to achieve fame and glory, the rest of the band disappeared into obscurity. Now 34 years later, as Terry, aka the Blind King, embarks on his retirement tour, Kris decides she is finally going to confront him and make it right. Starting with the former rhythm guitarist, Scottie, Kris manages to touch base with each of her former band mates, some of them sunk into craziness, while others have accepted their fate as washed up former musicians. But this isn't just the story of a faded musician trying for one last grasp at glory; this is the story of someone fighting for her very soul. Kris created or channeled some hidden evil while writing their last recorded, but unreleased album and this evil has taken over the lives of Terry, Scottie, Kris and their former band mates. As Kris travels closer and closer to the Blind King's last massive concert, so is every other metal head in the United States and Terry won't be happy to see her, but maybe she can finally exorcise some of the demons that have haunted her for years. This is a fun horror novel that plays with just about every trope of heavy metal, black metal and satanism, manages to leave a deeper impression and comments on the perils of fame and fortune, all in one book. While the horror itself is minimal, the effect it has on the lives of everyone involved is clearly scarier than anything otherworldly. Using the band's last unreleased album as a guiding light through the darkness helps the propel the novel forward and leaves a lasting impression. Grady Hendrix has a way of taking the normal and skewing it to show the horrors that lie just beneath the banal surface, and this novel, even while using the tropes of black metal, is no different.