The Oath Keeper’s Servant is a brutal, hell of a ride ideal for fans of horror who prefer a young adult flair. The originality in Zach Kuhl’s novel is astounding, and he has left me haunted.
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The Oath Keeper’s Servant is a horror novel, but it also passes as a young adult novel due to the age of its main character, Cassie, who is fourteen years old. But don’t let the young adult label fool you, this novel is not for the faint of heart. Cassie’s story is one of terrifying intrigue, and despite the urge to turn away from her story, you will be unable to do so. Zach Kuhl keeps you in his unrelenting grasp with each line, and you will be changed upon finishing his novel – whether you determine that to be for the better or the worse. His words are that bewitching.
Aside from the classic struggles of growing up, Cassie is faced with a unique situation in which an entity called the Oath Keeper abducts her to save his dying soul. Soon Cassie discovers that she is faced with fear, paranoia, and loneliness as she tries to fight for the right to her own body. Throughout the novel, Cassie fears that the Oath Keeper will take over her body and she will end up being a simple passenger in her own vessel. Doing so will cause her to lose her friends and family, and her life will seemingly cease to exist.
Possession horror is often oversaturated with stories that follow the basic exorcism storyline. I have to admit that I am not often a fan of the subgenre because it is hard for me to find stories that surprise me and reignite the fear that I first experienced when reading the original novel, The Exorcist. However, The Oath Keeper’s Servant turned the possession subgenre of horror on its head by combining the horrors of puberty and growing up with possession. The novel also challenges how we see our bodies and how we take for granted our sovereignty. Kuhl’s story is complex and thought-provoking, which makes it a novel I plan to read over and over again. You are sure to catch new things with each read, and my understanding of the story will remain unfinished due to its complexity.
The Oath Keeper’s Servant is a unique, horrifying novel that has challenged my view of the horror genre as a whole. Horror fans will be surprised and pleased with this excellent addition to the possession subgenre, and I thoroughly recommend reading it multiple times in order to understand it the best. I want to thank the author for presenting me with such a challenging – and rewarding – horror novel. I am completely enthralled, and I will be recommending The Oath Keeper’s Servant as one of my top horror picks from here on out.