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Benevolent Virus, A Paperback – November 16, 2010
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The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
"A Benevolent Virus is a collection of poignant and gripping stories about spirituality and near-death experiences. The author speaks of the soul, post traumatic stress disorder and post traumatic growth, current psychiatric notions of spiritual or numinous experiences, using her accumulated knowledge and wisdom from multiple philosophical traditions to define a path of spiritual freedom and enlightenment. I had read many books earlier on the topic of NDE, but this one I could not put down until the last page of the fiction. This is essential reading and I recommend to anyone interested in spiritual growth."(Ebrahim Amanat, M.D. Professor of Psychiatry at USC, and author of Suffering and Spiritual Growth)
About the Author
Adrienne is Irish, and worked in marketing for a computer company before committing herself full-time to delivering great spiritual truths through storytelling. She now lives in Jersey.
Top customer reviews
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I gave it to my sister for whom this topic is even less her cup of tea. Knowing her, I thought she might read the first page or two in deference to my urging (so different are our reading tastes), and then move on. To her surprise, she found it gripping, reading it from cover to cover. As she put it down, she had tears in her eyes and pronounced 'THAT WAS WONDERFUL, I LOVED IT'. I got to nod knowingly.... Yes indeed it was wonderful! This is a gem to which folks of all walks of life and all tastes in literature can relate. I believe this was an author who was born to write! Not only has she proven herself capable of tackling such a formidable topic but she has a marvelous turn of phrase, capturing nuances in relationships in sophisticated and often funny ways. Put this book on your agenda and keep an eye out for more of her work!
Ann Richards is a beautiful and gifted television reporter who interviews interesting people for the television audience. She is in a critical car crash, has an out of body experience where she watches the crash from above, noting all the details of the strange crash and has a near death experience where she sees not only the present but also her past in ways that open her eyes to secrets that answer many questions about her life. She survives the crash despite serious trauma and in the healing phases she is forced to come to grips with a failing marriage, a mother who has held secrets from her, and a career that threatens to end until she discovers a new way to use her experience.
Likewise Daniel Breton suffered a major injury in the Iraq war and also had a near death experience. Upon returning to health Daniel sets out to interview others who have had near death experiences, finding similarities and a common thread of attention to the spiritual aspect of being. In the course of his experiences he loses his best friend and it is his contemplation of his NDE that allows him to resort his life.
In the stories of these two very well drawn people the driving question is whether the near death experience and the discovery that death is not terrifying but actually beautiful makes living life on this level as worthy. Is having a near death experience that can only be grasped by fellow travelers a blessing or a curse? O'Brien manages to answer these questions in a manner that makes the reader sensitive to the possibilities of life after death and to the wonders of the spiritual world. And she does this without a trace of being maudlin or preachy: the facts of her story are laid out for the reader to examine and then explore privately at book's end.
Other writers have explored this arena but few with the skill of O'Brien: it is one thing to discuss the near death experience as an entity and it is quite another to blend it into a story that holds our attention to the end. Grady Harp, February 11
Dealing with Near Death Experiences, both personal and from others, the characters of Daniel and Ann are written beautifully. Through the story you learn more about them and and what their lives are all about, their relationships and their perspective of life and how it can change in an instant. The ending brings the parrallel stories together in a brilliantly drawn conclusion.
The power of this book leaves me in no doubt as to when it is my time to pass on from this life to the whatever lies ahead that I will have nothing to fear. This book is touching and enlightening. A definate for your book shelf.