Thursday, April 30, 2009

'Angel of Wrath' by Bill Myers

I think it’s no secret by now that I am quite taken with Christian fiction. And if it was an unknown fact for some, it’s no longer so. I enjoy reading this genre for many reasons, one of them being my faith (duh). However, this type of fiction has many sub-genres, including historical, mystery, thriller and contemporary. Some are mildly Christian, others quite hard-core I should say. I happen to like the hard-core ones the most. Because I am also a thriller fan, reading books about gory murders and evil characters is my favorite activity. Add to it the God and faith factor and I am lost in a book until it’s over. Now, I hope you’ll know why I loved Angel of Wrath by Bill Myers.

Angel of Wrath is apparently a sequel to another book by Mr. Myers but I couldn’t tell I was missing anything from the previous installment and can safely say that it can be read independently. We have three major characters here: Charlie Madison who is a retired Special Ops agent, Lisa, Charlie’s friend and a retired FBI agent, and Jaz, Charlie’s niece who even though deaf, can hear and sense a lot more than others. These three end up in Lisa’s childhood town to help her brother, pastor Thomas stop the chain of ruthless murders. The murdered are members of Thomas’s rapidly growing church and their bodies are always accompanied with an appropriate verse from the Bible referring to their specific sins. Parallel to the murders, a group of teenagers who believe themselves to be a New Age satanists, worship both the love of God and the wrath of Lucifer to bring about a new world order. This coven of teens quite stupidly and inadvertently releases a horrifying creature into the world. And so the murders and the terror of this hellish entity are what the whole town has to face up to before everyone gets destroyed.

First of all, let me just say that putting the fact it’s a Christian book aside, Angel of Wrath is quite a thriller. The action was very rapidly developing and it happened to be the first book in a long time that I managed to read within one day (and not even a whole 12-hour day). I honestly could not concentrate on doing anything else and had to drop all other activities just to know what happened in the book. My attempts at forgetting about Charlie, Lisa and their families for a while so I could concentrate on my own were futile. The best part of it all was that the killer was not really a secret and still it wasn’t about who kept murdering all those people but why and who would be next. On top of all the action and really fast writing, I can now add the Christian factor to it which, in my opinion completed the whole book. Mr. Myers wants a reader to think deeper about the little and big sins we commit and about the power of forgiveness and love which are really at the core of Christianity. Need I say that I was moved to tears at the end of the book? I suspect that I may be more sensitive than others when it comes to reading Christian fiction, but it’s just such a surprise to read a great thriller and yet find myself thinking about all the good things, including the redeeming power of love.


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Special Thanks to Miriam P. from Hachette Book Group for sending me a copy of this book.

If you want to find out more about Bill Myers, visit his official site which has a lot of interesting info.