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The Firstborn: They See What Others Cannot. But None Can See the Evil They Will Face from Within

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  • Posted January 4, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    A Page-Turning Thriller

    Conlan Brown hit a definite homerun with his debut supernatural thrill The Firstborn. From the first page, when Conlan Brown opened with heart-pounding action as the main character, Devin Bathurst, fights for his life while trying to save the life of an unnamed girl who is in mortal danger, I was hooked. The premise of the story is that the firstborn have been gifted with the ability to see the past, present, and the future. Instead of using their God-given gifts to help their fellow man, they're torn by infighting, power struggles, and mistrust. If they can set their differences aside and serve God by using the abilities He's given them, they may be able to stop the slaughter of innocent lives. Through gripping storytelling, Conlan does an excellent job of drawing the reader in and making the plot unfold in a way that makes the reader unsure about what will happen next.

    While all the characters were interesting, I especially liked the complexity of Devin Bathurst and John Temple. Their combination of strength and sensitivity made both the characters believable as well as likeable. I can't wait to read the next book in the series!

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  • Posted October 14, 2009

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    Loved this totally unique premise

    The Firstborn starts out with a rescue mission. Devin Bathurst is having visions of a kidnapped woman. He uses this sight to try and rescue her before she is killed. The scenes volley back and forth between Devin, the woman, and the kidnappers. Then we discover that the woman, Hannah, has a similar gift. She can see where a man has been, his past deeds. This leads us to the clever premise of the Firstborn, descentents of those who were rasised from the dead when Christ died on the cross. The Firstborn fall into three orders: Prima, Ora, and Domani. Those that can see the past, present, and future.

    But the Firstborn has grown paranoid over the years, each order fearing the other, and one man is trying to take over. Can Devin manage to follow God's will or his own to fight against what lies ahead?

    I thought this premise was brilliant. It's like, what if there were Christian mobsters? How would they act? What choices might they make? The story is fast-paced, action-packed, and gripping. The writing style was a bit jolting at first. Brown uses sentence fragments a lot and jumps from one point of view to another. But once it got going, I was hooked. I really liked Brown's characters, especially the play between Devin and John. If you're looking for a new suspense read, look no further. I'm excited to see what Conlan Brown comes up with next.

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  • Posted September 1, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Intrigue Suspense Supernatural Thriller

    Intrigue Suspense Supernatural Thriller

    Conlan Brown has intertwined creative imagination and a complex plot and unexpected twists that keep the reader turning pages at a breakneck speed right up to the final scene in "The Firstborn."

    The Prima, the Ora, and Domani, three distinct ancient religious orders make up the Firstborn. Individuals within the order have been empowered by God with the ability to use hindsight, insight, or foresight to intervene in crisis situations. The members originally were bonded together and dedicated to the purpose of using these gifts as agents of God. The order dates back to the cross of Christ. Duplicity, suspicion, internal strife, and manipulation caused disagreement and division. The Firstborn became an organization of warring factions doomed to destruction.

    Faced with the facts of a planned terrorist plot of retribution after the murder of a religious leader the Firstborn recognize their need to become a united front, elect an overseer to prevent this planned bloodbath which includes the shedding blood of the innocent including children.

    Brown's characters are wide-ranging and authentic, fanatical in their commitment to opposing systems of belief. Brown creates stereotypes of the extreme Evangelical Christian and radical fundamentalist Muslims, portraying bigotry, hatred, and dissension among people who claim to be serving God's purposes.

    I particularly appreciated the way Brown developed growth, understanding and maturing among his key characters as they evolved from shallow self centered individuals to mature dedicated purposeful Christians as they teamed together in trust and unity to thwart evil and to work toward the good of others.

    "First Born" a fast paced a novel of action, building a crescendo of mounting tension throughout engaging the reader in this suspense filled dramatic story of good and evil.

    As reviewed for Christian Books.

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  • Posted June 23, 2009

    Debut author ratchets up the action and suspense

    The Firstborn by Conlan Brown is what appears to be the first in a series of gifted individuals trying to do God's will here on earth. Devin Bathurst is a member of the Domani, one of three groups who view the world in a unique way. The Domani can see the future, the Ora the present, and the Prima the past. Devin races against time to rescue a young woman who has been kidnapped. Once she's safe, he discovers that the woman, Hannah Rice, is the granddaughter of the patriarch of the Prima . The two of them are soon on their way to a meeting of the three sects who normally never intermingle, but threats from the outside are causing some of them to want an Overseer to be in charge of all three groups. Devin, Hannah, along with rogue Ora John Temple are pressed hard to stop several terrorist plots while trying to figure out who is their enemy and who is a friend. I had a hard time at first getting into this debut novel. There are a few places that would have been served by a bit more polish, but once the action started, I literally could not turn the pages fast enough! Brown provides a great deal of insight into the point of view of each of the three groups, and those perceptions transfer to reality as well. Those who are focused on the future tend not to worry as much about immediate needs. Present minded people tend to live for the moment without worrying about consequences, and those living in the past can become depressed and apathetic. The action is brutal and well-written. I could see it all playing out in front of me. The characters are interesting and definitely worth following into future entries in the series.

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  • Posted June 15, 2009

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    New premise for me

    I have not read many Christian thrillers so was delighted to have a new idea presented. You may have come across this idea before but I haven't so bear with me. The idea ~ that those who were raised from the dead by Jesus after the crucifixion (Matthew 27:52) continue with their life on earth but because they have seen paradise, they continue to experience time out of time. This gift they pass on to their descendants who gradually divide into three groups, called the Firstborn. Some see the future, some what is going on right now, and some see the past. Because of their differences they gradually break apart and stop trusting each other but all continue to think that their purpose in life is to keep the world safe. It's the present time and Palestinian terrorists are threatening the children of America. Three members of the Firstborn plus one new member must stop the terrorists and at the same time keep the Firstborn from disintegrating and destroying themselves. The book moves quickly from one character to the next which helps to increase the tension of the story. Their characteristics are well developed and continue to develop throughout the story which I like, a growing character adds tension and interest. Little twists and turns help to keep the suspense building but I must admit that I didn't care for some of the very graphic torture details. Adjectives and adverbs abound in this thriller making it all the more exciting to read. I read this book through in one afternoon, constantly waiting for the next twist. Definitely a sign of a good book. I am giving this 4 stars.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 31, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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