The Blackened Threshold

Once, we crossed the blackened threshold, and there was no turning back.

A not-so-ancient Evil has awakened for no apparent reason in the formerly-quaint town of Hollow Crest. Most people don’t seem to notice or care, content with being swept up by the blossoming zeitgeist of mankind’s destructive zeal. Most people aren’t too bright.

Thankfully, there are still those who aren’t most people, even if they’re still comparably foolish: Jeremiah Baxter, stuck in a motionless and agonizing comfort; Naomi Wolfe, unsuccessful in closing her eyes on the inept builders of tomorrow; Roger Silver, self-appointed purveyor of cosmic knowledge and questionable meditation techniques.

United since childhood in their dissidence against a world they could never hope to change, the three friends find it in themselves to do the impossible and start paying attention to the world around them. Things are going downhill fast, and since, curiously enough, few are those who seem invested in doing anything about it, Jeremiah, Roger and Naomi find themselves shoved into the rare opportunity of accomplishing something worthwhile, albeit reluctantly.

Often misguided in their search for the root cause of the misery surrounding them, our heroes find themselves on a surrealistic collision course with the kind of enemy against which there is seemingly no recourse, an exponentially-growing threat with no end in sight. Their search for buried answers leads them back and forth, up and down through the town, as its life hangs by a thread. There is little optimism to be had about their chances, but then again, life has long-ago prepared them to deal with overwhelming odds and disappointment… or at least, it tried, and so will they.

The Blackened Threshold by David Ben Efraim (Book cover)

Reviews


“This book immediately establishes an excellent surrealist sense of humor that beautifully underpins the entire story and serves to enhance the investment that readers make in the world of the story. Whilst author David Ben Efraim has spun a humorous tale here, the accessibility of the narrative opens the reader up to the very relatable themes of trying to find a meaning for your life in a world that feels like it doesn’t care about you… I recommend it without hesitation to readers of any disposition.” – K.C. Finn, Reader’s Favourite


“A surreal, wicked, and hilarious take on the apocalyptic genre, The Blackened Threshold is well worth the read. David Ben Efraim tells the story of three friends trapped amid the gradual destruction of everything they had ever known and forced to assume the mantle of being saviors because the others are even more useless. Funny, clever, and full of quick-witted dialogue, the narrative is an absolute blast to go through. The characters are quirky and colorful, with distinct traits to their personalities that pop out of the pages. I thoroughly enjoyed the dynamic between Jerry, Naomi, and Roger and found some of the scenes involving Roger rip-roaringly hilarious. Highly recommended. ” – Pikasho Deka, Reader’s Favourite


“First let me say, this book was tons of fun. The humour is right up my alley, and the growing stakes kept me invested. If you enjoy a good tale about a ragtag group of friends SOMEHOW saving us all, this is a good one for you. This story is more than – just- an adventure, however.

I appreciated how the book explored the ennui of modern life. Though I was laughing as the characters bumbled their way through an adventure way over their heads, I related heavily with their desperate need to find significance in their life. The author then takes that and twists it into a parody of itself, to my delight. ” – Emma, Amazon customer


“A secret buried. Twice. Three friends, outliers in their town. A town that has never known violence or even crime. When Roger, the town’s spiritual guru, sees something disturbing on the town’s horizon, he knows something terrible is going to happen. Naomi, the town’s art teacher, discovers a disturbing piece of art painted by one of her not-so-promising students. Jeremy, the night watchman at the town’s biggest employer, has a disturbing dream. A mysterious yet hilarious adventure ensues in which the three friends try to save their small peaceful town by burning down the art gallery, breaking out of prison, and battling with a painting that grows roots and refuses to be moved. In their quest, they must dodge angry mobs and rebellious cows. They also cannot do all the saving alone and enlist the help of the town coroner, the librarian, and an old shop owner with a vendetta. Will the three friends succeed in their quest, or will they succumb to the madness unleashed on their town? The Blackened Threshold, written by David Ben Efraim, is a humorous escapade that promises to entertain.

David Ben Efraim has written a hilarious novel in which he explores the themes of conspiracy theories and their effect on society, the loss of literacy, and the obsolescence of libraries in a world where learning has become a chore. He explores the idea of a collective human mindset and how many of us have become followers and do not think for ourselves. He does all of this in The Blackened Threshold in such a humorous and witty manner that you cannot help but continue reading to see what the characters are going to do. The ironic humor is spot-on and breaks any atmosphere of seriousness that could develop. My favorite scene is when Naomi is helped over a wall. “It’s… It’s all right…women… they have a small terminal velocity, they can survive any fall.” Roger was trying his best to be reassuring. “You’re thinking of rats and squirrels.” The rest of the book continues in the same fashion, and I cannot imagine the story being told in any other way.” – Delene Vrey, Readers’ Favorite


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