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I have been an avid reader from as early as I can remember. Since becoming a Christian in my early 20s, my passion for reading led to specifically Christian fiction and this has developed into reviewing them on this blog. I love reading debut author's novels or those author's who have not had many reviews thus providing them much needed encouragement 
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Sunday, 20 October 2013

Infernal Gates, by Michael J Webb



My rating: 


I read this on October 6th, 2013

http://www.michaeljwebbfiction.com/

Description: 


IS ETHAN FREEMAN AMERICA'S WORST TERRORIST, OR SOMETHING MUCH MORE EXTRAORDINARY?

Ethan Freeman, ex-Special Forces Ranger, wakes up to discover he is the sole survivor of a fiery commercial airline crash that killed his entire family. His nightmare is only beginning when he becomes the FBI’s prime suspect. Only Ethan knows he’s not a cold-hearted murderer, but he has no idea what happened to him--and why he alone survived.
He finds an unlikely ally in Sam Weaver, the NTSB Chief Investigator. An ex-military pilot, Sam senses Ethan is innocent. She tries to remain dispassionate in her investigation of the crash even as she finds herself attracted to the man who may be America=s worst homegrown mass-murderer.
Neither Ethan nor Sam realize that shadowy spiritual forces are at work which will alter their lives forever.
A monstrous evil, imprisoned since the time of the Pharaohs, has been released by The Nine, a sinister group of powerful men and women who believe they are the direct descendants of the Anunnaki, ancient Sumerian gods. The demon they have unleashed intends to free The Destroyer from The Abyss, the angelic prison referred to in the Book of Revelation, and unleash a worldwide reign of terror and annihilation.
Facing impossible odds, time is running out for Ethan and all of humanity as he is drawn into an ever-deeper conspiracy--millennia in the making--and learns that he is the key to stopping The Nine. Will he overcome his deepest fears and find reserves of strength he never knew he had as he confronts pure evil in order to save himself and an unsuspecting world?

Review: 

Michael Webb states that readers will love his novels if they enjoy a plot with a "... Christian world view, with lots of action and adventure, fascinating and flawed characters, with more than a dash of the supernatural...". 

Infernal Gates lives up to this statement. This is one well researched and well-constructed story. 

The first half of the plot centres on Ethan Freeman, an ex-Special Forces Ranger, who finds himself the sole survivor of a plane crash but instead of waking up amoungst the plane wreckage, finds himself at home and has no idea how he got there. In order to work out what had happened, he shows up at the crash site and makes himself known to the crash scene investigators. What follows is the crash scene investigators trying to pin the crash on him, proving he has the motive, means and opportunity. 

Interspersed amoungst this is the subplots that introduce their own various characters resulting in the intersection of, as Webb says in his Amazon Bio, “…traditional and forbidden history, the origins of demons and their influence on mankind throughout the ages, quantum physics, and the unseen war in the heavenlies between angelic forces and agents of darkness…..”. This lays the foundation for one fast paced, multi layered but all connected plot where you wonder how all the pieces and characters could fit together. 

Webb is a master at depicting the spiritual environment based on the Bible and what is known of angelology/demonology in history and culture. His demons are real to the reader, his angels are also real, but so is the character and personality of the God that Christians know and love. There is power in all this that strengthens your faith about who God is, the power of His victory over sin and death, His love, mercy, forgiveness, and compassion for his creation of man, but also of his judgement and condemnation for those of mankind and fallen angels for their sin and rebellion. 


The second of the novel is involved in all of what I have just described. All the subplots converge to expose the spiritual battle involved with Ethan, Sam, and others chosen by God to stop a demon from unleashing those fallen angels who are imprisoned in the Abyss as described in Jude and Revelation so they can force mankind to worship them as gods just as they had before their imprisonment. This tracks back to the Anunnaki, related to the Nephilim described in Genesis 6: 1-4. 

Webb impressed me with his depiction of the power of prayer, namely that of intercessory/supplication prayer, and worship warfare. I have not had the former in such detail before or as powerfully portrayed and the latter is the first introduction for me of this concept. If only the former could be more of a practice and discipline in all Christians lives and the latter the same but as a corporate practice of the body of Christ: the Church!! We would really see the mighty hand of the Spirit move in a way not described since Pentecost described in Acts!

This second half of the novel is where the plot, really comes into its own. Everything really revs up and as the saying goes, “the plot thickens!” leading to an even faster paced and wild ride than the first half and a very satisfying ending. 

Webb succeeds again, as he did in his previous book, The Oldest Enemy, where he entertains as well as educates in spiritual warfare, the nature of our enemy, satan and his many demons while giving opportunity for us to strengthen our faith and fine tune the weapons of our warfare, prayer, God’s authority over sin and death and recognising that the battle really does belong to the Lord. 

Highly recommended.   

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