“The Shock of Night,” by Patrick W. Carr

I recently had the chance to read The Shock of Night, by Patrick W. Carr, a Christian fantasy novel set that is the first in a series called “The Darkwater Saga”. This book was published on November 3 by Bethany House.

About this book (from the back cover):

When one man is brutally murdered and the priest he works for mortally wounded on the streets of Bunard, Willet Dura is called to investigate. Yet the clues to the crime lead to contradictions and questions without answers. As Willet begins to question the dying priest, the man pulls Willet close and screams in a foreign tongue. Then he dies without another word.

Willet returns to the city, no closer to answers than before, but his senses are skewed. People he touches appear to have a subtle shift, a twist seen at the edge of his vision, and it’s as though he can see their deepest thoughts. In a world divided between haves and have-nots, gifted and common, Willet soon learns he’s been passed the rarest gift of all: a gift that’s not supposed to exist.

Now Willet must pursue the murderer still on the loose in Bunard even as he’s pulled into a much more dangerous and epic conflict that threatens not only his city, but his entire world–a conflict that will force him to come to terms with his own tortured past if he wants to survive.

My Verdict:

I love Patrick Carr’s books. Before I read his book called A Cast of Stones, I had never read anything that fell under the umbrella of Christian fantasy or sci-fi, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I am now a huge fan of this genre, and of Carr’s books specifically! Muck like his past books, I felt this one had a little trouble holding my attention at first, and in some passages I felt like the author was trying to use big words on purpose when smaller words would have sufficed. But then, like with his other books, once I had the setting and the characters established in my mind, and once the action began, I really got swept away by this book. I was quickly hooked, and I finished this book in a matter of hours. So what is Christian fantasy? When I think “fantasy”, I think of things like Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time books. If you like that series, you’ll like this one. The “Christian” part comes in through a number of references to the Trinity (called by different names) and the involvement of the church (in four major denominations) as an entity that is involved heavily in the kingdom in which this book is set. Nothing over-the-top, and nothing extreme that I would think readers would find offensive.

The protagonist is not a simple one to figure out, and there are a lot of mysteries along the way (some of which don’t get resolved in this book), but I like that the book does not end on a cliffhanger, even though there are obviously more books yet to come in this series. (There is also currently a prequel called By Divine Right available for FREE for Kindle.)

If you’d like to check out The Shock of Night it is currently on sale for $9.99 for the Kindle version right now. (Regularly $15.99) If you prefer a hard copy it’s currently on sale for $12.48. Remember, Amazon’s prices can change at any time.

The featured product for this review was provided to me at no cost by Bethany House. All opinions expressed are my own. This site is an Amazon affiliate, and purchases made through Amazon links (including linked book covers) may result in my receiving a small commission (at no additional cost to you). If you’d like to sign up to receive review copies from Bethany House, visit www.bethanyhouse.com/bookreviewers.

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