The Burning Hill by A.D. Flint
About The Book
On the run from unjust court-martial back home, a young British soldier gets robbed and shot on Copacabana Beach. The bullet in Jake’s head should have killed him but, miraculously, it saves him from a previously undetected brain aneurysm that soon would have killed him. Jake doesn’t believe in fate, nor does he feel he owes anything to anybody, but he does hate injustice, and the favela kid that fired the bullet is a victim of injustice. Named Vilson, the teenage kid is in a corner with corrupt cops and a sadistic drug-lord after his blood. Jake was at his best in combat, he is not so great at being a civilian. His career was destroyed by a compulsion to fly in the face of authority, and Brazil was meant to be a clean break. But anger is never far from the surface, and it drives him into Vilson’s brutal world, intent on getting him out. If he can just save Vilson, maybe he can finally purge some of his own demons.
With a turf war erupting between drug gangs and corrupt cops for control of Vilson’s favela, fear stalks every narrow alleyway. And anyone dragged up to the notorious Burning Hill had better hope they’re dead before they get there. But it’s not just fear that shapes life in the favela, belief is also powerful, able to both save and destroy. When Jake rescues Vilson from execution on the Burning Hill and spirits him away from the favela, Vilson is convinced that he is finally on the path to his destiny, having clung to a promise made to him in childhood. When it turns to dust he becomes someone else, something else. From timid kid to vengeful killer, he becomes known as the Ghost when he returns to the superstitious favela. Jake refuses to give up on a kid seemingly beyond saving and, in a final conflict on the Burning Hill, he is faced with a choice that could push him to the dark edges of society forever. The Burning Hill is about the power of belief and one man’s compulsion to get justice at any cost.
This had been a compelling read, an addictive and fast paced story that will arrive to your heart.
This is not an easy read, the story is centred in Brazil and the favelas area but the reader, thanks to the author’s description and narrative, feels transported to this colourful country, with their own corruption and problems which will make the reader totally invested on this story.
The story is told between the two main characters; Jake and Vilson, how they meet, their past… and how they try to stay alive fighting with their own Ghosts…
I have to say that I was totally addicted to this tale, the author had done an amazing job transmitting the characters’ thoughts and actions making the reader fear for their lives and suffer their pain on our own skin. I’ve never read a book in which the life/corruption in Brazil was so vividly explained, and this story will be with me for a long time.
Ready to enter The Burning Hill?
About The Author
On a June afternoon in 2000 there was a robbery just a few blocks from where the author was living in Ipanema, Rio de Janeiro. It turned into a hostage situation. The teenage robber had survived a notorious massacre of street children outside a Rio church years before, and the tragedy that played out in the aftermath of the robbery on live TV news was an embodiment of the desperation of life at the bottom of the heap. An ugly thing in this beautiful city, shocking, even to a society inured to everyday violence.
As a Brit new to Rio, the author was beguiled by the city, and found it profoundly disturbing to watch something happening just down the road that was so out of control and so wrong. The author spent a year in Brazil and now lives on the south coast of England with his Brazilian wife and two sons.