So… if you’ve read review #1 you’ll know that we got drenched to the bone on day 1 of our hols. But the sun shone for the rest of the week. So much so that by day 3 I was sunburnt and wondering where in the attic the Factor 20 might be… We drove to Kenmare – what a beautiful little town! Strolling through the market I picked up some second hand books including an copy of ‘Juno and the Paycock’, an Irish play I studied in secondary school.
We had the most wonderful relaxing time. And as I mentioned, I got lots of reading done.
So to my second book review…
Sons of Cain by Val Bianco
After I read the prologue of this book I was intrigued but a little skeptical of how the story would progress. The book is a work of fiction but starts with an account of Pope Leo XIII’s vision on October 13th 1884. This actually happened and is well documented. It surprised me by turning out to be exactly what I love to read. Well mostly… Style wise – think John Grisham meets Dan Brown meets Frank Peretti with a bit of The Screwtape Letters thrown in for good measure!
Sons of Cain is a story that unfolds in two realms. On earth there is the appearance of a deeply hidden cult that is so extreme in its nature, it is considered by most to be folklore and exaggeration. But it is real and its influence and evil intent reaches far into the corridors of power right to the Supreme Court and the Oval Office itself. Then there is the team of godly men working secretly to fight this evil. (Already you can see why it’s right up my street.) In the other realm, the spiritual realm, demons and angels work to influence, help, hinder, trap, kill, save… and every so often the two realms collide.
As a Christian who loves action/thrillers this was a great combination but every so often it felt as if some very specific doctrine was being ‘crowbar-ed’ in to the story. The author is Roman Catholic and the odd time it felt like he was pulling me out of the story to correct my theology. I was raised Roman Catholic, but have lived most of my ‘committed Christian’ life outside of the RC church – so I realise my antennae were on high alert. There were a few nods towards why Protestants/Evangelicals have it wrong and at times I got frustrated and just wanted to get back into the story.
Having said that, it was fast moving, the story continued to unfold and kept getting better. There was some truly terrifying imagery but it rang true and reminded me that there is a lot going on that we don’t see. It also was a reminder that good eventually triumphs over evil, but at a cost.
I was a bit disappointed that it didn’t end exactly as I’d have loved it too (don’t want to do a spoiler here…) but it was fitting that fulfillment in serving God and his purposes was the priority. All in all a great combo of action and spirituality. If you’re into the things of God you’ll enjoy it. Especially if you’re a Catholic! 😀