Invitation: Harbingers Cycle One by Bill Myers, Frank Peretti, Angela Hunt, and Alton Gansky Review

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Synopsis: Four Bestselling Authors Team Up for Thrilling Supernatural Suspense – Gathering four stories from four bestselling author friends, Invitation is the first collection in the ongoing Harbingers series.

In “The Call” by Bill Myers, four strangers are drawn together to help a student at the mysterious Institute for Advanced Psychic Studies. His gifts are supposedly being honed to assist world leaders . . . but there are some very disturbing strings attached.

Frank Peretti’s “The Haunted” confronts a supernatural mystery, a case of murder, and an exploration into the darkness of the human heart, all centering around a mysterious house.

In Angela Hunt’s “The Sentinels,” animals around the world are mysteriously dying. What could it mean? When the tragedy begins to touch Andi’s dreams, she discovers a terrifying theory.

“The Girl” by Alton Gansky is a gripping tale of a young barefoot girl found holding a scroll in the snowy Oregon mountains. She is sweet, innocent–apparently not of this world–and something wants to kill her.

My Thoughts: This is an interesting bind up of 4 novellas, each written by a different author but in stories that are connected to each other (each author narrating one of the 4 main characters in the book). It is presented like a television series with new “episodes” and at this point, there have been 18 novellas written for the series. Because of this, each story is left open-ended, which I don’t like. I’m not a fan of long book series’ so I’m not sure if I’ll continue.

Each story was enjoyable but I think my favorite was The Call by Bill Myers, told by Brenda, a tattoo artist. Each character has a special gift and they are brought together in each story to solve a problem.

The characters all had their own voice (a benefit of having 4 different authors writing each character). They were all different and well-rounded, they also had interesting background stories.

I found the overall story line of spiritual warfare interesting but struggled with the theology of some of the things that happened. When this occurred, I reminded myself that it was fictional, but I do tend to hold Christian Fiction at a higher standard than secular fiction when it comes to the lesson that is learned. Throughout the book, there weren’t really any lessons learned, which I didn’t care for.

Overall, this book was enjoyable but not something that I would read again.

My Rating: 3 and a half stars

I received this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review.

Pokergeist by Michael Phillip Cash Review


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Synopsis: Sometimes life, as well as death, is about second chances. Luckless Telly Martin doesn’t have a clue. An awful gambler trying to scrape by as a professional poker player, he becomes the protégé of world famous poker champion Clutch Henderson. The only catch…Clutch is a ghost.
Telly and Clutch must navigate the seedy gambling underbelly of Las Vegas learning to trust each other in order to win the elusive International Series of Poker, repair their shattered personal relationships and find redemption in this life and the hereafter.

My Thoughts: With the exception of Point Horror and Fear Street, I haven’t read many ghost story books. This story was very unique…it focused on a ghost but it wasn’t presented in a scary way.

The story takes place in Las Vegas and centers around a down on his luck man named Telly Martin. Telly has recently lost his job and is struggling financially. With the support of his wife, he is pursuing his dream of being a poker player, but this dream is quickly coming to an end as he is not doing well. He then through strange circumstances meets the ghost of one of the best poker players of all times, Clutch Henderson. Clutch wants to help him get to the championships and win. The story goes from there.

I loved the glitzy setting of Las Vegas…Vegas is the kind of place that I love to read about and watch shows about but I don’t think I’d like it in real life. I also loved following Telly to his poker games and seeing how he’s treated by the poker veterans. I would be terrified to play a casino table game as I know nothing about them and I’m sure I’d embarrass myself so it was a little comforting to see Telly feeling the same way.

I did find it strange that when Telly first encountered the ghost of Clutch, he didn’t seem extremely surprised or terrified. He seemed to acclimate to the situation fairly quickly. He wasn’t happy with Clutch but he also didn’t seem surprised to have him around.

Clutch was a good character, he was very complex and driven. He had a goal and was determined to get it one way or another. Telly was also a good character but he was a bit negative at times which I didn’t care for.

Overall, this was a fun, lighthearted story that had great pacing and kept me interested with each turn of the page.

My Rating: 3 and a half stars

I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

The After House by Michael Phillip Cash Review


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Goodreads Synopsis: Remy Galway and her daughter Olivia are rebuilding their life after a failed marriage in a 300 year old cottage in historic Cold Spring Harbor, Long Island. Little do they know, another occupant is lurking in the haven of their own home. Will the After House be their shelter or their tomb?

My Thoughts: I requested this book because of the cover…it is one of my favorite book covers of all time. Based on the cover and synopsis, I expected a very creepy ghost story, but the story was a lot different than what I thought it would be. The story is not very scary and crosses many genres…paranormal, romance, historical.

I loved the setting of the story…it takes place on Long Island in a very old cottage that is inhabited by an old sea captain. I also  liked the writing style, it was very easy to fall into and adapt to. The story was unique and unlike anything I’d read before.

My main issue with this book was the romance…I despise insta-love, especially in an adult book. The romance in this book was ridiculously fast paced and immature (I tend to give some leeway to YA insta-love as the characters are teenagers).

Overall, this was an enjoyable book when taken for what it is. I do think people would be disappointed if they go into it expecting a scary horror story.

My Rating: 3 stars

I received this book in exchange for an honest review.

 

Trance by Linda Gerber Review

tranceGenre: Young Adult, Paranormal

Judging the Cover: This cover has a holographic effect to it that I really like.

Plot According to Goodreads: Ashlyn Greenfield has always known when bad things are going to happen. Each time that familiar tingling at the back of her neck begins, she knows what’s to come: a trance. She’s pulled in, blindsided, an unwilling witness to a horrible upcoming event. But she’s never been able to stop it; not even when the vision was of her mother’s fatal car accident. When soulful Jake enters Ashlyn’s life, she begins having trances about another car accident.

My Thoughts: The premise of this book sounded very interesting to me, so I was eager to read it. Unfortunately, I was a bit disappointed.

The Good: The main character, Ashlyn has a pretty rough life…her mother was killed in a car accident where Ashlyn was the driver, her father is practically absent from her life, and her sister moved away and Ashlyn has no way of contacting her…not to mention the fact that Ashlyn experiences premonitions that she is unable to control. I really felt sympathy for Ashlyn and felt that her character was well developed. Romance in books usually annoys me, especially young adult romance, but the romance in this book was sweet and realistic.

What I didn’t Like: The entire story felt like a huge buildup that didn’t really amount to much. The story dragged a lot in the middle and the ending was extremely predictable. I am not a fan of paranormal elements or things that have to do with the occult, so I didn’t like the numerology element.

My Rating: 2/5 stars. This wasn’t the book for me.