Book Review- ‘Requiem for the Rooster’ by Mark Howen

What does it take to speak truth to power in a corrupt society? What role does our family play in shaping us as citizens? How important is it to self-introspect and examine our life choices for the collective good? Mark Howen’s Requiem for the Rooster is a suspenseful thriller that dwells deeply into these serious moral and political questions.

In this sequel to The Inherent Dangers in Digging Up the Family Tree (2015), Mason Worthy is back home after being rescued by his family from a deadly hostage. However, fate had some other plans for the Worthy family. His twenty-four-year-old daughter Kat, an ardent environmental activist, becomes a target of a crooked politician and his corporate allies who have been dumping toxic waste in water sources. What follows thereafter is a compelling story of the power of truth and courage weaved together with intriguing characters and exciting turns.

Mason Worthy is a hard-working, passionate, and intelligent man. He thinks deeply about the questions of right and wrong, justice and injustice, and so on. He has always been conscious of social issues and his integrity and honesty mean the most to him. A loving husband to Hope and an affectionate father to Paige and Kat, he is very close to his family. Mason and Hope have always taught their daughters to make the right choices and think about the consequences of their actions. Having inherited strong values from their parents, both grow up to become independent and opinionated women.

Mason is a well-read citizen and never hesitates to speak his mind. Seeing the growing hatred in society, sometimes he gets angry which puts his life at risk. He is a mysterious character to watch out for. His will to survive against all odds amazes the reader as the story goes on. His values become the driving force of his family through difficulties.

Kat is another fascinating character in the story. She is the younger daughter of the family. She is impatient and impulsive but also passionate and well-informed, much like her father. She cares deeply about the environment. Her activism makes her and her family a target of some politicians and businesses when she openly protests against their environmentally disastrous actions. She is courageous and never gives up her struggle for justice even at the cost of her physical safety. It is her bravery, along with her compassion, which makes her command great respect from others. She is a caring friend to Teri. In all her struggles, her father’s teachings remain close to her. The author has invested greatly into detailing her inner turmoil of anger, guilt, and passion as she takes upon her fight against the system.

Howen’s writing is a staunch commentary on the downfall of society at the hands of corrupt and self-centered politicians. Important themes such as corporate lobbying, environmental damage, the culture of bribery, and the suppression of opposition by the powerful keep coming. Through several monologues, he also points out the deep frustration of the citizens at the transition of a democracy into a state of hate, intolerance, and greed.

Through Mason’s actions and thoughts, Howen focuses on the importance of keeping one’s ‘promise’. In a way, he wants to persuade his reader to introspect their integrity and honesty, especially in difficult times. The moral messages are interwoven with suspense which keeps the reader surprised. He has put great effort into developing the characters which are layered and intense. The complexity of human emotions and relationships is beautifully shown. In the middle of the thrilling episodes, there are moments of laughter and banter between the characters. He also lets us peep into the vulnerability of his characters, even the cold ones such as Red. This brings a touch of sensitivity to the overall suspenseful narrative.

The Worthy family, which is at the center of the story, is a closely-knitted one. All four of them are not only deeply caring and protective of each other but also give each other courage and strength in hardships. Caring about the world is something passed down from the parents to their daughters. They make sure to base their decisions on righteousness and truth. Not only are social wrongs questioned, but they also believe in the value of looking inward and questioning one’s hypocrisy. The author has done an incredible job of showing the interconnectedness between our inner and outer worlds. It comes as an important take on contemporary issues like corruption and intolerance. As the story unfolds, the reader realizes the importance of family upbringing in solving social issues.

Requiem for the Rooster is an interesting read as it is not only a nail-biting ride with twists and turns but also deals with socially relevant themes. The story leaves the reader with serious moral questions. The end seems rather unfinished leaving quite a scope for another sequel. Grab your copy on Amazon today and prepare for a riveting journey into the shadows of intrigue and revelation.

Read: An Interview with Mark Howen, Author of Requiem for the Rooster

Share on: