- File Size: 1558 KB
- Print Length: 268 pages
- Publication Date: August 15, 2017
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B072BXLT1V
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #708,890 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
|Print List Price:||$12.99|
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Journey To Faithful (The Faithful Trilogy Book 1) Kindle Edition
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When I started reading I thought is it would focus on Sam Bennett the sexy undercover FBI agent who is trying to save two women from a sick domestic terrorist cult, but it isn’t. The story focuses on Jake Bennett, Sam’s brother who he calls to help him with the two women he is trying to save. Sam knows there is a leak in the organization and he needs someone he trusts while he continues to search out the rat.
Jake travels across the country to take Ethel and Laura Howard to Faithful, a small town in Tennessee where Jake is the local doctor. Before long Jake is conflicted because he is so attracted to Laura, an experience he hasn't had in some time. Jake doesn’t know how to deal with his attraction because of the hurt and pain from his past that he can’t put aside. He is still smarting from the death of his son and the betrayal of his ex-wife. Laura also has a lot of baggage that keeps her heart locked away.
The story is told from third person, multiple points of view. A good technique that keeps the reader on edge and continually turning the page. We are mostly in Jake's and Laura’s heads, but the times when Sam or the cult’s leaders make an appearance, the tension builds even higher. The book is a page turner with the constant action, a romance in the making, and a mystery unfolding.
The two main characters are ideal for me. Jake is a good man who must deal with a lot of heartache that continues to haunt him. Family and friends mean a lot to him, so he doesn’t think twice when Sam calls him for help. Laura is a good strong female character who can stand on her own when necessary. She also knows when to lean on someone else to help her get through the day.
The small-town setting adds a lot to the story. Neighbors help one another and love some good gossip. The ancillary characters add tremendously to the story. Jake and Sam’s grandmother, Mercy is a feisty old girl. She comes to the emotional rescue on more than one occasion. Mercy and her friend, who sometimes act like enemies are good for some laugh out loud moments. Esther is still a mystery except for the fact that she experienced abuse at the hands of the terrorists from the time she was a child.
I highly recommend this book. Journey to Faithful is my first book by Anna Bishop Barker. I thoroughly enjoy the way she tells a story. She brings the characters to life, and the reader can’t help but pray for the characters to get over the hurdles life throws at them.
Journey is the beginning of a trilogy that will follow the residents of Faithful. You will have a good laugh, a few tears, and sit on the edge of your reading chair often. The next book is going to focus on Sam and Delilah. There are still a couple loose ends but nothing that keeps this book from standing on its own. Sam’s book sounds like a second chance to me, so that means I will be right on that one at release time.
So, I'm going to be very frank here (and feel free to judge me on this) but I was extremely apprehensive about Journey To Faithful. I was excited, because as Anna's friend and mahoooosive fan I knew how much of a big deal this book would be to her, and as a reader— well, after Going Under I just wanted more of her writing. Back to my apprehension. I'm not a religious person, I had a strict religious upbringing, but when I was old enough to decide what was what for myself... I found that religion did not play a part in my life. It wasn't for me. So, when I saw the title for this book I pretty much winced... I was nervous and mixed with my excitement it just left me in the middle of nowhere feelings wise. As I started Journey I felt all my fears and worries surrounding me, it starts with a cult like feel that I can only compare to The Leftovers. In my mind this "cult" was akin to the GI and it had me jittery as to where this story was going. I found myself drowning in questions... Were these people Amish? Were they inbred Hill Billies? Was this some sort of polygamous community? You name it, I asked it and believe some of those questions that bombarded me were a lot darker and sicker than I care to verbalise.
I didn't have to wait too long to have my answer, and in a way that made me feel a little better about where this plot was going to go, but at the same time I wish that that suspense and mystery could've been carried through and woven more intricately throughout the development of the story. I do feel like this is a story of two clear halves. The first is focused more on the action element of the storyline and the second on the romance. In all honesty, I didn't care for the first half. It was slow paced and all the POV switching stunted it and made it far too scatty for me. To be frank, I did not need The Brotherhood POV— it took away from the suspense which Anna is so brilliant at. It would've been great to have had that element of mystery so that it carried the action plot all the way to a stifling cliffhanger at the end of this book. I feel like Sam's book should really be the one that unravels The Brotherhood as he is the one that holds a lot of the knowledge.
Sticking with the POVs, I'm not quite sure why there was a need to tell what should've been Jake and Laura's story from so many perspectives. Nine to be precise. NINE POVs. It felt like the whole cast had it's own perspective... even though not all secondary characters are given that honour. Does that make them unimportant to the story? I'm not sure, but sadly, this really annoyed me and unfortunately took away from what essentially is a great plot. Things got murky and messy because all the POVs lent themselves to a few inconsistencies within the plot. I really wish that Anna's Betas and even her editor had picked up on this, or maybe it's just me being a fussy reader... very quickly before we go on let's just clarify that I'm not dishing blame or fault onto her team. It's important that we understand that every reader has their own preferences and ideals.
Moving on to the second half of this story. This is the book's saving grace for me, and I'm so bummed that there wasn't more of it. The romance is exceptional in the second half. This is where I really got to empathise with Jake and Laura. I wanted more of their backstories. I want more depth to their pasts, because they are portrayed as having a big impact in who they are in the present, yet it's all allusive and not enough actual depth. I wanted to know a lot more about who they were. In my opinion there was so much more to squeeze and juice out of their pasts and that is where that grit and pain that made Going Under so great was at. The tidbits of insight we got into their pasts completely gripped me and made me want to get lost in Jake and Laura. As characters I found them beguiling in that I was completely enamoured with them and their bursts of banter. If I'm honest, the characters are what made me finish Journey To Faithful.
Once we got to the romance the pace really picked up and it felt like we went from naught to a hundred in under a second. I was so bummed that the romance wasn't the primary focus of this story. It would've taken it from 3.5 star read to, at least 4 stars. I feel a little bummed that I didn't enjoy Journey To Faithful as much as Going Under. But, I also think it's important to acknowledge that this is Anna's second book. Taking that into consideration I have to applaud her on such a great plot concept. I also have to emphasise that although I personally didn't adore it, that other people have raved about it. So, again, different people have different needs from a story. Although, I did have a little moment with Jake's ex-wife. Pity she was such a knob. I have to give it to Anna, she made me get upset at myself! Then there was the Titan reference that made me smile— even if I did feel that it didn't really fit with the story. But hey, it's Titan, even if it doesn't fit, it fits... by force! Oh, and the whole Kyle thing... Anna Bishop Barker! OhMygoodygoodGod woman!
Bottom line is that I would've read Journey To Faithful regardless, and I will read the next two books in the trilogy. Not just because I love Anna to bits, but because I know that she will take every bit of criticism and use it to fuel the writing ninja inside her. On a serious note, I still very much think that she is an author to look out for, and Journey to Faithful will be an anomaly in her repertoire.
Most recent customer reviews
Anna Bishop Barker I am forever your fan.
This was truly an awesome read.Read more