Occult Assassin: Damnation Code by William Massa, Critical Mass Publishing, p/b, £5.99/Kindle, £1.99, Website
Reviewed by Dave Brzeski
Having given ‘Occult: Assassin: Ice Shadows’ a positive review recently, I’d been looking forward to reading Mark Talon’s first full length outing, which also happens to be his first adventure. Think of ‘Ice Shadows’ novella as a sort of pilot for the main series, whereas this is the actual first episode.
The cross between the Occult Detective, and Mens’ Adventure genres is maintained as we learn how Special Forces Operative, Mark Talon is introduced to the occult. I would have expected that the death of a character that I knew was coming, due to it having been referenced in ‘Ice Shadows’, would not have that much impact. But in the hands of William Massa, the tragic death that set Mark Talon on his new path still hits hard. The villain responsible for this death is intent on fusing computer technology with the forces of darkeness. William Massa is by no means the first author to combine the worlds of Information Technology and the occult, but the ‘Damnation Code’ easily holds its own in this particular sub-sub-genre.
Mark Talon, reeling from a killing that comes close to destroying him, gradually comes to understand that the occult is a real and present danger, rather than the silly mumbo jumbo he’d always dismissed it as. The realisation doesn’t come easy, and not before more deaths occur. Still unbelieving, Talon charges headlong in to a situation he is not at all equipped to handle. His only hope is to survive long enough to see if the mysterious billionaire, Simon Casca can help him save the world.
I find myself quickly becoming a fan of William Massa’s work, and can’t wait for the next book in this series. I would suggest that any TV/Film producers on the look out for a good property to option could do far worse than check this out.