by Molly Jo Realy @RealMojo68
One of the perks of knowing the people I know, is every so often, I get asked to read books. For no other reason than to read them. And, you know, tell others [that would be you] what I think.
So, some time ago I was given a copy of the aforementioned book by podcast cohost, Alton Gansky. Being the ridiculously slow reader that I am, I didn’t pick the book up until a few weeks later. But once I got into it, I really got into it.
I actually pack it in my bag each day.
That’s something I don’t do, folks! I don’t read in public. I get too distracted. Or I have too many errands to do. But lately, I’ve forgone those pesky errands and planted myself during lunch at the local Starbucks just so I can read what happens next.
Now, Harbingers is unique for several reasons, and I’m gonna tell you why.
FIRST It started out with four authors, each writing a section, or “book”, from the perspective of their own character. That is, Book One was written by Bill Myers in the voice of his character, Brenda. Frank Peretti (later Jeff Gerke), Angie Hunt, and Al Gansky each take a spin for the following sections.
SECOND The first twelve books have been picked up to be published in “cycles”. The first four are in INVITATION.
THIRD It is a very quick read. Well, for most folks. I tend to not dive into a book until I can really commit to it, but this one reads so fast even I was pleasantly surprised. Each book was written to be read in just a day or two. That’s great for people like me. It’s also not great, because when I was done with the first book I just wanted to plow right in to the second one but this thing call housework and another thing called job got in the way.
FOURTH What a joy to read a book that doesn’t take the reader out of the story. As an editor, I naturally find myself critical of writing styles and search subconsciously for errors. I can happily say I was
disappointed. Or, not disappointed. Or . . . I just mean the book made me forget I was an editor. That’s hard to do, and highly appreciated.
FIFTH I ain’t gonna lie to you here, the draw for me is I know or have at least met each of the authors except Frank Peretti. Now, when you’re a newbie in the Christian writing world, these are some pretty great names to know. But that’s just my little thing to hold on to.
So let me give you the rundown report on Book One: The Call by Bill Myers.
*WHOOT! WHOOT!* Wait a minute, folks. That’s the spoiler alarm going off! If you don’t want to know about the storyline, best to stop reading here and get yourself a copy of the book. But if you’ve already read it and want to see if my review compares to yours, then by all means, please continue.
SYNOPSIS: Brenda is a “street-hustling tattoo artist who sees images of the future.” Her clients think it’s a game when she tattoos what she sees on them. Two guys bring a drunk friend (“Tank”) and leave him there. The same friend she’s been seeing in her visions. After she works her magic, she’s ready to leave for the night but Tank’s friends don’t return. She’s not the kind to leave him passed out on the sidewalk so she gets him into her car.
Before she can start driving, a low-flying plane, on fire, shoots overhead. Brenda drives to follow it and finds the Professor and Andi have survived the crash. Tank recognizes they are all in the new tattoo on his arm. Whether they like it or not, their paths have brought them together. They discover The Institute: A location known for mysterious events and promoting students with quite a bit of, shall we say, psychic activity.
They meet Sridhar, an unwilling student, and Dr. Trenton, the man in charge. But even now things aren’t what they seem. A terrible energy field controls and amplifies the worst fears of those who enter it. Chants and smoke contribute to the
graduation induction ceremony for students as they prepare to go into world with the skills they’ve developed, and the spirit guides they’ve received.
It seems our four are the only ones who recognize Sridhar’s apprehension, and understand they must rescue him. And so they try. But how can four unarmed strangers unite in a game plan against security guards and strong, dark energy?
That, my friends, is why you must by this book. Because I won’t tell you the rest.
A well-written, easy to read, fast paced story that has depth of character, backstory, suspense, conflict. All the things you want in a book. With enough realism to gnaw at the back of your neck as you read about spirits and demons, but enough fabrication to let you sleep at night . . . maybe.
Book One: The Call by Bill Myers is just the beginning. Stay tuned for reports on the rest of INVITATION.
And Frankly, My Dear . . . That’s all she wrote!