Monday, April 21, 2008

The Angel Hunter by J.A. Leary

ISBN: 9781595072160 - ABISVC (2007)
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (3/08)

Victoria Hunter has not had a good year.  First, her beloved husband dies in a tragic skydiving accident.  Shortly afterwards, miraculously, she finds out that she is pregnant with twins.  When they are three-months old, she discovers that she has intruders in her home.  They are there to kidnap her babies.  She fights for them, but there is a strong evil presence involved and she loses them.  The evil makes her forget them.  When Victoria's mother discovers they are gone, she calls the police.  Victoria realizes that there is something wrong, and she struggles to remember.  She gets placed in a mental institution.  At first they think she has post-partum psychosis, but when chilling events occur, her psychiatrist knows there is something happening on a deeper level.
Victoria is desperate to find her babies.  She feels called to Notre Dame in Indiana.  There is a grotto there on the campus that is supposed to contain the souls of the damned. The grotto has been breached; a priest there heard their cries and knows that Victoria's babies have passed through.  Victoria's creation, and those of her twins, was not the typical one.  She has to enter into the grotto to find her children.  Entering into this hell-like place, she discovers her inner strength and has to fight the evil trying to suck her in and destroy her. 
"The Angel Hunter" is an incredible story.  On a scale of 1 to 5, it is a ten.  J. A. Leary has done a remarkable job with writing this supernatural thriller.  He uses science, psychology, history and a touch of the divine to pull the reader into his world.  Many times I found myself with chills and goose bumps as I read.  As a supernatural thriller, this is a phenomenal book, yet underneath it all is an even greater message to be conveyed to the reader.  The message teaches us about the divine that is in us all, and the pain that comes when we distance ourselves from it.  I absolutely loved this aspect of "Angel Hunter," because it made me reach beyond the story to look within myself and where I am at. 
In the appendix of "The Angel Hunter," Leary lists books that the reader can use as resources to help with their own awakening.  He states that Victoria's story is a journey, "of enlightenment coming through extreme suffering…her pain is something that we can all identify with on some level."  I cannot wait to read further books by this author.
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