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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 new author's novels or author's who have not had many reviews or exposure and giving them much needed encouragement where appropriate.   
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Sunday, 29 November 2015

The Veil: A Novel...of Current Biblical Proportions by DJ Edmonston


Jacob had it all, or so he thought. Having been a successful and internationally recognized architect who enjoyed the finer things in life—the six figure income, the BMW, complete with a wonderful wife and adoring son. But it was all gone now. After three long agonizing years of watching his beloved son battle and ultimately succumb to leukemia, his wife Elaine, stricken with grief and unable to cope abruptly walks away from their marriage. Only months after the loss of his family, and during the financial crisis and great recession, his career ends as his firm closes their doors. Jacob would have ended it all if not for his friend Paul Bevelchek and their Pastor Alan Caldwell giving him their friendship and hope. Jacob abruptly has an onset of strange dreams and visions. In the midst of this, Pastor Alan sends Jacob to the office of billionaire Jeremy Richards at Jeremy’s request. Upon his arrival, all hell breaks loose as Jacob witnesses the murder of Richards and flees with what might be the key to unlocking not only the reasons for Richard’s murder but possibly the answers to the ancient prophecies that seem to be unfolding before the eyes of Jake and his friends. The three friends suddenly find themselves thrown into a high octane, “no holds barred” adventure as assassins hunt for Jacob, and will stop at nothing until they have what he had taken from Richards' office. As the three friends struggle to survive, they discover the enormity of The Veil’s deception and the all-encompassing spiritual battle involving mankind’s eternal fight for freedom. Will The Veil continue to be used to deceive mankind? Will mankind continue to look to the “creation” for answers, or will we finally turn to the “Creator?” Prepare for an engaging and exciting literary adventure that will keep you on the edge of your seat as Jake and his friends seek answers to the age-old questions between good and evil in the first of this hard-hitting Veil series.

The Guru's Review: 

When I was approached by the author to review this novel and its sequel, I had no idea of the experience I was going have in reading his novel. There is so much to like and love about this novel, the characters, the plot, the action, the mystery, the suspense, demonic deception. However, the one thing that stands out for me is the spiritual aspects. This is one story that is not just from the imagination of the author but is, I believe, God inspired and directed. 

This is not just a tale of good versus evil. This is all out spiritual warfare between those in a position of power in government and it's security organizations who are manipulated by fallen angels to dominate the human race as part of their rebellion against God and their hatred of the human race. Reading it illustrates just how this could happen in today's headlines and events leading towards the return of Christ. Edmonston has deliberately constructed and depicted it like this to be a warning of what is to come and what we as Christians need to be aware of, how to be spiritually prepared and empowered to act and to make aware those who don't know Christ and to avoid an eternity in Hell. 

I am impressed with Edmonston's research and interpretation of the political and economic climate and of those organizations and their specific members that are directly involved with clandestine operations that suit their selfishness, deception and those of the fallen angels that are manipulating these people to suit the agenda previously mentioned. The ending of this novel brings all this agenda together and sets the stage for more of this in Book 2, Crisis. It sure seems that everything is going rev up even more. I am looking forward to this. 

Edmonston writes well and has constructed the plot to be fast paced, with many twists and turns, with all the usual constructs in a novel of this genre. However, this novel is resplendent with spiritual intervention from God, namely the Spirit of God, who guides the actions of the Christian characters who live out the bible verse of Zechariah 4:6, 
'Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ Says the Lord of hosts.
It is from this aspect that this novel shines. Edmonston has depicted his characters, Jacob (Jake), the main protagonist, Alan, the Pastor, Jeremy Richards, Frank Smyth, Ray Callahan, David Strang, (and any I have left out) as being submitted and in tune with God and His Spirit. These characters show us how to be discerning of the things of God, to hear His voice literally and figuratively and through action and events. This novel is one of predominantly spiritual warfare, and Edmonston has used the events depicted to not just show us how to live during events such as these but also in our day to day lives. Whether the reader is a Christian or not, we are involved in spiritual warfare that was set in motion from satan's rebellion against God and Adam and Eve's sin against Him as well. This novel shows which side we need to be on, and what Christians can do to encourage and win those who either knowingly or unknowingly are being manipulated by satan's and his minion's influence and on a path to eternal damnation. 

While some Christians might find the spiritual aspects depicted very idealistic, and not how it happens in real life, I find that what Edmonston has depicted is exactly how it should be and for some this is just how it is. How Edmonston has portrayed the direct voice of God telling someone to do something while they are in dire straights or direct physical or spiritual warfare, or when they are so despairing that all hope seems lost and they are told they are loved or forgiven by Him is directly how God works. I guess it depends on how responsive Christians are to His Spirit and what their relationship with Him is like as to whether they experience Him like this or not. I am just so thankful and grateful that He has other ways to communicate to us as well. 

Most churches do not experience the revival that Edmonston depicts, but again, it is very much possible, as evidenced by recorded church history. This novel's depiction is most likely how it will be in the time before Jesus returns as the congregation respond to the Spirit's call and guidance both in a spiritual and physical sense.  

Edmonston's construction of the spiritual warfare aspects is chilling but realistic. There is a veil that separates the spiritual from the physical and I loved the analogy of this in the prologue. And it is here that Edmonston shows the reader the rules of engagement in this warfare, the power of prayer, applying the Word of God, claiming the Word of God, physically and spiritually standing against the onslaught, being discerning of the evil around you, knowing how the enemy thinks and behaves, submission to God and as stated previously, living our lives in His Spirit and not by any of our might or power. 

I have come across a new form of Christian genre, created by author and fellow reviewer, David Bergsland, called Spirit-Filled fiction. Here, David describes it through the novel's Christian characters who are, 
....evangelicals who have come to a deep and close personal relationship with Jesus, communicating daily about needs, direction, seeking guidance, praying for/receiving healings, and so on. Now, I’m not talking about characters who are necessarily pentecostal, but those who have a real relationship with the Lord which includes regular communication, direct guidance, prophetic implications, a touch of the miraculous, and the normal evidences of Christian life as presented by Jesus in Mark 16: 14-18,
"Afterward He appeared to the eleven themselves as they were reclining at the table; and He reproached them for their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they had not believed those who had seen Him after He had risen. And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned. These signs will accompany those who have believed: in My name they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues; they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
This novel definitely fits this new genre and it is this type of Christian fiction that I find the most rewarding. I expect in Christian fiction to be entertained, my faith in Christ either strengthened, edified or challenged to go to the next level in Him and to be educated in Christian living, biblical doctrine, spiritual warfare and many other topics that will deepen my Christian worldview. Edmonston more than achieves this for me in this novel. Edmonston's characters most certainly meet the criteria that Bergsland cites, 
....real relationship with the Lord which includes regular communication, direct guidance, prophetic implications, a touch of the miraculous, and the normal evidences of Christian life as presented by Jesus in Mark 16: 14-18
While we are talking of characters, Edmonston shines here as well. These are not just Spirit-Filled believers, but people that you can relate to. Despite being in tune with God or His Spirit, they still show fear, apprehension or are tempted to act on their own. They are not perfect just because they have the Spirit of God living inside them. My favorite was David Strang. I could relate to him and what he went through in this story wey well. Edmonston succeeded in showing the grief and the Saudade that Jake experiences from the breakup of his marriage and death of his son. I related very well to the latter having lost two children a few decades ago. However, I guess what stands out for me is that these characters have a love for people that only comes from having a relationship with Jesus and being guided by His Spirit. It challenges me to be more like this in my own life. 

This is one novel that I will not forget and is one of my favorites. DJ Edmonston is one author that I will continue to follow. 

Special Offer: When the author asked me to review The Veil, he also asked me to provide a link to his website where you can download a free PDF copy of this novel. Go here to access this free copy. 

Note that at the moment the website states this is for a sample, but the author will send the full novel from this link. 

Highly Recommended.

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