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Tears Of Paradox (Storms Of Transformation Series Book 1) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 421 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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"The Hangman" by Mary Burton
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Top Customer Reviews
Full disclosure: This is a **very** Catholic novel. He who finds the Catholic ethos too uncomfortable to bear, or unrealistically strict for our time, will likely not enjoy it. Then again, isn’t that always the way of things? Who is it, pray tell, that whispers in our ears that “everybody does it,” that “you only live once” and “shouldn’t be Puritanical?”
The writing is smooth and almost error-free. The sins many indie writers commit in their spelling, grammar, punctuation, and wrong-word usage are virtually absent here. Protagonists Jason and Michelle are attractively portrayed, particularly in those moments when they’re caught between the attractions of temptation and the dictates of conscience. It makes them more vivid than the can-do-no-wrong variety of hero we’ve seen altogether too often in recent fiction.
The book does have some drawbacks. Its pacing is too slow for a reader to expect to finish it quickly, certainly not in a single sitting. It requires more concentration than most stories of its kind. Its separated-in-time dual first-person narratives sometimes make for heavy weather. Also, now and then Miss Bova could be more specific about particular developments in the political context of the story. That having been said, the emotional journey makes the effort required worth while.
This is an unapologetically conservative and Catholic book—the characters rail on the "government sharks" and go to Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament—and no doubt readers who oppose those institutions will be thoroughly turned off. But open-minded readers will be treated to a well-written exploration of real people in all-too-real sociopolitical situations. Michelle's prayers are a vivid peek into the soul of a person that would have fit great and improved my books. I wish I had the inspiration of this book before I finished my latest.
As a plot snob, I missed a solid, structured plot in Paradox, and some of the scenes were repetitive. It takes a while to get going, but when it does, it's gripping. The last quarter of the book is intense and very thought-provoking.
Paradox is a tragedy. It follows a family that goes through Hell and more than a sense of warning for the impending dystopia, the reader gains a sense of gratitude for what he has—the freedoms, the material wealth, and most importantly, his loved ones. What takeaway from a novel could be more important than that?
Daniella Bova's dystopian novel Tears of Paradox shows us what happens when the war on God is over, and "they" have won.
We've got a two-tier story going on here. It'll throw some at first, especially since they take place at two different points in time. Both points of view are from a married couple, Jason and Michelle. Michelle narrates a point in the future, where -- as James Clavell once put it -- they have won. Jason narrates a tale of love and personal redemption, leading up to the dystopia that Michelle talks of. After the first chapter, you catch on rather quickly. But it takes some time to adapt.
The two narratives compliment each other perfectly, each offering commentary on the other. It's a nice balancing act that I don't see that often -- attempted but failed on Lost, mostly perfected on Arrow -- and it works, once you see what Madam Bova is doing.
The sad thing here is that there's nothing that novel about this dystopia. Easily 90% of it is just the reasonable and rational conclusion of current insanity. When exactly do we get to the point where private citizens are forced to keep Christmas lights indoors because atheists can't be bothered teaching their children about religion? Healthcare has already been expanded to include abortion, so what's the next logical step in the progression? Conscience laws have been under attack for years, how long until they're gone completely?
A lot of people use the term "slippery slope" to be dismissive. Tears of Paradox shows us that it's more than some political talking point. It also shows us that the slope doesn't need to be all that slippery, because we're already halfway down the incline. It's what happens when good people stop fighting, because evil doesn't sleep, doesn't rest, and doesn't stop.
Tears of Paradox is also a journey about running on faith when there's nothing left to run on. Faith, a lot of prayer, knowing when to talk away, when to run, and when to fight.
When I was in college, I good a course on the philosophy of literature. Most of it consisted of traditional Catholic books -- Walker Percy, Graham Greene, Bernanos, Gabriel Marcel, Endo, a few others. At the end of the day, Daniella Bova belongs with all of them. For those who are overly well-read in Catholic literature, imagine if Walker Percy's Love in the Ruins was instead written by Graham Greene, with Percy coming in after to make it less suicide-inducing.
At the end of the day, Tears of Paradox is a work of literature, but don't hold that against it.
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