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Epoch Awakening Paperback – December 21, 2013
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The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
From the Author
The Epoch Trilogy springs from two shorts I wrote several years ago while living on Camano Island, WA, that were, at the time, distinct beginnings to distinct stories. One was about Daniel, an alienated man from NYC, and the other was about Peter... who then lived mostly in his own head. Returning to them a few years after they were written, I began to see that in fact their stories were intertwined, only later to realize the full extent of the relationship.
In this first book we meet both, along with a cast of other characters, and begin to understand the connection of the two and the significance of this connection to the world they inhabit, the world they create and live.
I'm excited to finally be able to offer this as a finished product, and am well into the initial writing of Book 2, Redemption. And although it will be a few years before the third, The Final Reformation, makes its way onto bookshelves, I find my mind journeying ahead, to a second set of books, to another story of a Second Epoch.
All is not what it seems. It is ever so.
About the Author
Jeffrey Panzer was born in Rochester, NY in 1981. The youngest of three siblings, he graduated from Cornell University in 2005, receiving a degree in Philosophy, after which he moved with his long-time girlfriend, Yvette, to North Bend, WA, where they currently reside. Jeffrey works as a private instructor of English and language arts, spending his free time with his family and pets -- three cats, a bloodhound named Jeremiah, and a pitbull named Prudence -- enjoying the outdoors and all that the wilderness of Washington has to offer. In July of 2012 the two were blessed with the birth of a daughter, Irie Annemarie, and look forward to more children in the future.
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Top customer reviews
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The main reason for not giving this a 5 are probably a bit nit-picky. For one, although I know there are more stories to follow, in many ways I still expect the story to have a bit more feel of "conclusion" than I got with this one. It's not a huge drawback as it is with some books, but it does sort of gnaw at me.
The other thing that I truly don't understand is that very little of our currently available technology, and how it affects our lives, plays any part in this story. In the "earlier" scenes, I would expect more use of cell phones, cell phone cameras & video, etc., These things exist today and, at least before the dystopian time-frame, you'd think people would have videoed and shared across the internet many of the major events. There is very little ability to control the dissemination of information today, and I wouldn't expect this to disappear in the next decade or two (if ever).
However, all that being said, this was still a strong, compelling story, written in a convincing voice, with storytelling techniques that don't detract from the overall effect. I await the next installment.
Given the current state of world affairs, and our technology-given ability to know about these events as soon as they happen, this book raises interesting questions about the proper course of action for those who see so much wrong. Is political protest enough? Even worthwhile? Should we seek to obtain a position of power and change the system from the inside? Or should we smoke a J, drop a dose and explore the inner horizons of the mind since none of this is real anyway?
What works best of all here - the reason I’ve given it those five stars - is the mood the story creates: the way it captures the superficially contradictory combination of idealism’s naivety and freedom-of-spirit with the worldly wise realism that is inevitable in those, even the young, who are politically aware in an environment that is either inimical to their aspirations (the elite) or apathetic (everyone else). That’s only half of it, though. There is also another more spiritual element that never quite comes into focus but that infuses the story with an immanent significance. The result is to give the whole thing a unique feel that combines the down-too-earth and the epic. In this sense, it’s unlike anything else I have ever read.
Both story threads take the form of journeys, with the earlier thread evolving into something of a thriller while the latter is more about discovery and revelation, at a personal level and in terms of how the two halves of the story fit together. This keeps the balance between action and introspection and sustains the level of intrigue all the way through.
It could also be described as dystopian fiction, although that is more of a backdrop to the decades-later half of the story than a centerpiece.
I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys dystopian or speculative fiction, especially of the more thought-provoking kind.
Can't wait for the next installment.