Metaphysics and murder collide in this uneasy sci-fi, mystery and Christian fiction mashup.
The narrative, presented as a mixture of poetry and prose, concerns the travails of an unnamed law enforcement investigator, who’s also the book’s narrator. He’s a loving family man, happily married, devoted to his young daughter and professionally partnered with his friend Felix. But an unusual encounter in the park involving a strange book with disturbing illustrations rips the narrator’s family away from him, and in the aftermath of the tragedy, he and Felix become caught up in a struggle between cosmic forces. What seems to be a gruesome series of murders is gradually revealed to be part of the ongoing battle against Evil—a war in which the narrator and Felix find themselves outmatched. However, what could be a relatively straightforward progression of events turns into anything but. The first-person point of view often takes a metafictional perspective that haphazardly addresses readers as it careens past the fourth wall without slowing down. The time period jumps without cues, and the narrative constantly shifts among several mysteries, an overtly religious discussion that lays out a moral and spiritual argument for dealing with the world today, and what appears to be an alien invasion. On top of that, the writing is often overly mannered and off-putting, stuffed with excessive amounts of adverbs, numerous words used in ways that contradict both the dictionary and common usage (“Why to live in boundless suffer?”) and a puzzling array of words surrounded by quotation marks: e.g., “My subconscious mind ‘insisted’ using a ‘live lure’ was our only chance of capturing the monsters.” That habit tends to give these words a seemingly unwanted sarcastic edge, and the general cognitive dissonance can be confusing.
An impenetrable cosmic battle.