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The Book of Things to Come - A Hand of Adonai Novel Paperback – August 25, 2015
"Children of Blood and Bone"
Tomi Adeyemi conjures a stunning world of dark magic and danger in her West African-inspired fantasy debut. Learn more
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About the Author
In addition to being a loving father and husband, Aaron Gansky is an author, novelist, editor, teacher, and podcast host. In 2009, he earned his M.F.A in Fiction at the prestigious Antioch University of Los Angeles, one of the top five low-residency writing schools in the nation. Prior to that, he attained his Bachelor of Arts degree in English with an emphasis in Creative Writing where he studied, in part, under Bret Anthony Johnston, now the Director of Creative Writing at Harvard University. His first novel The Bargain (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas) was a 2014 Selah Finalist. He has written two books on the craft of writing fiction; Firsts in Fiction: First Lines and Write to Be Heard (with Diane Sherlock).
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Top customer reviews
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The story centers around high-school students, Lauren and Oliver, who designed and wrote a very detailed computer game. Once the game is finished and all the loose ends have been tied up, Oliver runs the program to test for bugs. However, the game takes over and transports the teens and two of their friends into the make-believe computer world, which turns out to be a real world in a different dimension. They are the fulfillment of an ancient prophecy in a real world that they created... or did they? There seems to be a Higher Power behind the millions of lines of code, and the reader wonders - Who came first, the chicken or the egg?
Playing the characters they have designed, the friends follow the script as much as possible, knowing they have to complete the game's missions in order to escape and go back home. The obstacles they face grow increasingly more complex and dangerous, and they level up in power, weapons, and skills after each battle.
The story seems to race along much too fast, with several missed opportunities for interacting with the world they are in. And then the story slams to a close without an ending. How disappointed I was to find out that if I want to know what happens next, or even if the friends make it back home safely, I will have to buy book two, and possibly three. The book ends mid-story without warning. Turns out, this is only the first installment in a series. So, be warned! You will have to spend a lot of money to get to the end of this tale.
Aaron Gansky is a skilled storyteller. He has created a world teen can relate to and discover a bit about themselves as they join the characters on their journey both in and outside the virtual world.
I’ll state here I don’t play video games. But the creativity of this writer kept me in the story. His descriptions of place and action were wonderful. I will admit I felt the fight scenes lasted much too long. But then again isn’t that the main focus of video games.
This is not any ordinary video game and the virtual world holds many spiritual lessons for the reader. The ending is a cliff hanger. And the next level of play has to wait until the next installment in the series. I will be waiting to read that one as well.
The first in a series, Hand of Adonai is a Young Adult Fantasy novel that starts in North Chester, Minnesota and ends in Alrujah, a video game kingdom created by best friends Lauren Knowles and Oliver Shaw.
They're not perfect characters. They have real struggles. Like weight gain and bullies and broken families and high school awkward genes. So they create a perfect world. Lauren writes out her ideas in her journals and Oliver transforms them into computer code that results in a game.
After a particularly hard day for both of them, they wake up. Or do they? Lauren doesn't know if she's dreaming or dead. Oliver doesn't know what to do. Together, they play along with the game only to find there's more to it than they invented.
Dark creatures like the Nar'esh and Beresus are not easy to conquer. And worse, Lauren and Oliver are in the roles of a Princess and a Monk ~ not easily deniable. Their traveling companions swear to protect them. But would they still, if they knew they were frauds? Or are they gods?
Soon they are joined by Erica Hall and Aiden Prince ~ the objects of their real-life affections. It's hard enough to navigate through high school emotions in this world. Setting aside teen angst and popularity contests, the four must work together to return home from a place that shouldn't even exist. Will the demon Belphegor win the game by destroying Alrujah?
Aaron Gansky has a remarkable writing style: exceptionally well developed characters, dialogue, action, setting, emotions. At times I had to take a break from reading for things like sleep and food and work, and was highly irritated to do so. I've read HoA twice now and enjoyed it each time.
There are elements that will appeal to all readers. I recommend this to everyone.
Most recent customer reviews
I thought it ended abruptly, even knowing it has a sequel to it. I will probably read the next book.Read more