Book Review: The Kingdom by J.R. Mabry

The Kingdom (Berkeley Blackfriars #1)The Kingdom by J.R. Mabry
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

J.R. Mabry has done a great job creating one of the most interesting collection of characters I’ve come across. The main characters are a group of Friars, who are part of the Old Catholic church – an independent group of churches that have separated from the hierarchy of the Roman Catholics – but they’re not what you’d expect for Catholic clergy.

For starters they’re decidedly not celibate, and there are a couple of rather explicit scenes involving gay sex. They swear, drink, smoke weed and will do pretty much whatever they need to in order to fight the very real demons that creep into our world – including learning practices from non-Christian faiths including Wicca, Enochian and Goetic magick and shamanism.

No, they’re not traditional Friars, but the story makes it clear that there’s no doubting the sincerity of their faith.

There’s a lot of humour in the book and a lot of tension. Between the disappearance of all the avocados in the world, demonic possessions to dispel and their very human vulnerabilities, the Friars keep busy. I enjoyed just how real the characters come across. I found myself laughing, crying, celebrating and mourning with them – cheering them on and getting mad at them.

This is the first book of a trilogy and the next two parts are due to come out in the first half of 2018. I’m looking forward to seeing what they get to handle with next.

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