The Cure

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Overview

What Price Would You Pay for The Cure?

Riley Keep, former man of God, former missionary, now haunts the streets, a ghost of who he used to be. Wife, daughter, and faith have all been lost in the aftermath of a single act of wickedness. Any chance at forgiveness seems a distant dream.

Until he hears rumors….

There's a small town in Maine where miracles are happening.

In a ...

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Overview

What Price Would You Pay for The Cure?

Riley Keep, former man of God, former missionary, now haunts the streets, a ghost of who he used to be. Wife, daughter, and faith have all been lost in the aftermath of a single act of wickedness. Any chance at forgiveness seems a distant dream.

Until he hears rumors….

There's a small town in Maine where miracles are happening.

In a last bid for survival, Riley sets out and soon finds himself in Dublin, Maine, a coastal village nestled against the jagged shore of the cold Atlantic, a town he thought he'd never see again. This once-proud birthplace of mighty wooden ships, then idyllic seaside tourist destination and safe harbor for lobstermen, is now slowly suffocating underneath an avalanche of desperate people searching for help. But will they find their miracle? After all, sometimes the disease is not as dangerous as The Cure…

From the acclaimed author of River Rising, selected by Booklist as one of the Top 10 Christian Novels of 2006!

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Editorial Reviews

infuzemag.com
The plot is unpredictable and surprising, even though clues are sprinkled throughout the book. The final twist was chilling and, unfortunately, not unrealistic in today's world. Homelessness and the complex problems they bring are a strong component of the book. Corporate greed is another strong theme of the book, and the author does a wonderful job weaving in the deceit and the actions of those unrestrained by ethics and driven by the bottom-a common scene in today's headlines.
—Cheryl Russell
curledup.com
...The Cure by Athol Dickson is a five-star book.... The Cure is filled with intense emotions - guilt, love for an ex-wife and daughter, and a great need to right a wrong. No matter what Riley does, his intentions go awry and he creates a worse situation. This is not an easy book to read, but once the reader connects with the characters, it will be a story that one will remember for a long time. If I had to choose my favorite book read so far this year, it would have to be The Cure.
—Marie Hashima Lofton
semicolonblog.com
The Cure reminds me somewhat of a John Grisham novel: lots of intrigue, South American missionaries, fugitives, criminals, homelessness, lawyers, a large pharmaceutical company, broken, imperfect people. I give that comparison as a person who has read almost all of Grisham's novels and admired most of them. I do think both The Cure and River Rising have a spiritual and thematic depth that is lacking in Grisham's novels. If you know someone who likes Grisham, and you want to give him a new book in that same vein, I would suggest The Cure.
—Sherry Early
christianreviewofbooks.com
It's a mystery filled with hope - a real life kind of adventure story. Even though I love a well developed, character driven book, the artfulness with which Dickson weaves his plot will leave any reader satisfied.
—David White
faithfulreader.com
The symbolic use of communion in Riley's battle with addiction, the incredible commitment of Hope, the question of ethics and causes of alcoholism, and the tireless giving of Willa are all deeper invitations to investigate aspects of faith, relationships and life than readers discover in the usual Christian fiction fare. This is a must-read novel for anyone interested in inspirational fiction. And even those who don't usually read the genre will want to give it a look.
—Cindy Crosby
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781602851283
  • Publisher: Center Point Large Print
  • Publication date: 3/28/2008
  • Series: Center Point Christian Mystery (Large Print) Ser.
  • Edition description: Large Print Edition
  • Pages: 398
  • Product dimensions: 6.27 (w) x 8.46 (h) x 1.23 (d)

Meet the Author

Athol Dickson's university-level training in painting, sculpture, and architecture was followed by a long career as an architect then his decision several years ago to devote full time to writing. River Rising, named one of the top novels of 2006 by Booklist magazine, received a Christy Award and his novel They Shall See God was a Christy Award finalist. He and his wife, Sue, live in Southern California.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 7 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 26, 2013

    Reverend Riley Keep was once a missionary in Brazil. He and his

    Reverend Riley Keep was once a missionary in Brazil. He and his beautiful wife spent four great  years building community and relationships with the native peoples.  Then he took a sabbatical while a group of Doctors were sent there to help with the people's medical needs. Riley returned to see that everyone had been murdered, save one small girl. This started him on a tailspin of devastation and drunkenness.  He and, his wife, and new daughter returned to his hometown in Dublin, Maine only to find himself getting deeper into alcoholism.  Eventually, in desperation, he left home.




    Now, three years later, and homeless on the streets of Florida, with his very sick friend, Brice, he's heard that there's a cure for alcoholism in his old home town.  He carries Brice and walks, also hitching rides, to get to the cure. When he reaches his hometown, no one recognizes this now filthy, shaggy haired, bearded homeless man.  He and Brice settle into a homeless shelter run by a caring elderly woman, only to have Brice die while drinking in the laundry room.  Riley continually blames himself for all the death and destruction that seems to surround him.  Then one day, he steals an offering envelope from the church only to find it contains some of "the cure" for alcoholism.  Rumor of this cure brings hundreds of homeless people to this small seaside town, but once again destruction comes in rioting, looting, and fires because others seemed to be deigned the cure.




    This science fiction type mystery follows a twist of greed and unknown deceptions as Riley finds himself caught up in so much more than he can handle alone.   The theme of Paul's story from the Bible, of the thorn in his side that he wants God to remove, is played out in this story quit wonderfully.  Good read for those who like to imagine "what if"----what if there was a pill that could cure alcoholism with one dose, but you could never drink again,  would you take it? 

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  • Posted December 26, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Athol Dickson in his new book, ¿The Cure" published by Auth

    Athol Dickson in his new book, “The Cure" published by Author Author brings us into the life of Riley Keep.

    From the back cover: Riley Keep, former missionary, now a drunk, is begging on the streets and desperate to forget a past he lost in one far-flung act of wickedness. Then he hears the rumors. Miracles are happening in the picture postcard village of Dublin, Maine.

    Riley isn’t the only Pilgrim searching for deliverance. There’s the old woman fleeing a horrific monster, the lonely wife tempted by forbidden desire, the impoverished lobsterman lured by tainted wealth, the young girl weighing life and death decisions, and the small town cop with a murder on his hands. But only Riley keep will learn if it’s true what people say: sometimes The Cure is much worse than the disease.

    Before Athol Dickson became a master storyteller he was a master architect. It takes great creativity, imagination and “smarts” to design a building that will fit within the specified acreage and have all the required components and still be spectacularly beautiful. Now that Mr. Dickson tells stories he utilizes all the skills he developed in building buildings to build stories for us.

    I know that when I find a book by Athol Dickson I am in for a really great story read. When Athol Dickson tells a story he builds it like an architect, start with the foundation and then each floor goes up methodically after the previous floor has been built. Reading “The Cure” is a lot like being thirty-five stories in the air, walking on nothing but a steel girder just wide enough for your foot; no walls, no floors, nothing but air. Very terrifying but it leaves you with a deep sense of fulfillment when you are done. Mr. Dickson has provided us with another winner with a his focus on addiction and how do you cure it? Do you use medical science that can make you worse off than when you were addicted or is there a better way? Riley Keep is a drunk who hears about a cure and miracles happening so he goes in search of answers. What he finds puts him in direct opposition to those that are promoting the cure. And that is where the events start turning deadly. “The Cure” is loaded with twists and turns and red herrings that will leave you guessing all the while you are flipping pages to find out what happens next. When you finish this book you will heave a hugely satisfying sigh because you have enjoyed yourself immensely. I liked this book and recommend it highly!

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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  • Posted November 28, 2012

    With a host of characters you won¿t forget soon and some that yo

    With a host of characters you won’t forget soon and some that you can even relate to, Athol Dickson has penned a novel of suspense, human weaknesses, greed, soul-searching, forgiveness, and reconciliation on several levels in The Cure.

    Riley Keep, a one-time pastor and missionary, who has fallen into alcoholism; living on the street, begging for money for alcohol, food and shelter; all the while trying to forget his past failures; and dealing with his frantic need to fix things. Hope Keep who has kicked Riley out of the house because of his violent behaviors; her desire for another man though it clashes with her marital commitment; and her current role as Dublin’s Mayor. Bree Keep wanting a daddy’s wisdom, but finds herself falling into sin and becoming pregnant out-of-wedlock. Willa, the ever-helpful supervisor at the shelter in Dublin, Maine, who is on the run for her life. Mr. Lee Hanks of Hanks Pharmaceuticals, who is ready to produce The Cure, but at an unreachable cost to those who need it most.

    The depth of the characters makes them as real as your own friends, family and acquaintances; the whys behind the personal failures emerge throughout the storyline; and the ever-longing desire to be loved and accepted permeates the novel. When rumors of a miracle is spread across the states, homeless men and women caught up in alcoholism cause an unfathomable influx into the city of Dublin, leaving the dying town to deal with the homeless and how to feed them without enabling them, one of whom is Riley.

    Interwoven into the story are tidbits of information that give you clues as to the mystery of what has and is transpiring behind the main scene. These tidbits create suspense that keep you glued to the book, piecing together the mystery of what happened in Riley’s life that haunts him and keeps Willa running and hiding for her life. Deceit, betrayal, murder, lawsuits, destruction, and fear for their lives keep the intensity of the drama consistent from the first page to the last.

    The author’s descriptive prose, such as pregnant clouds, virgin snow, sparkling ice, miserly sun, and steely waters adds a fresh depth to the story. I loved the way he wove these envisioning descriptions through this novel in his rich style of writing. It adds to the complexity of the plots that twist and turn constantly throughout.

    Hope and redemption was always there for the asking, it’s just that Riley had to be willing to look for the real source of redemption, instead of relying on science for a ‘miracle cure.’ He learns that he cannot fix everything, but that there is One who can, but in a way that Riley hasn’t yet experienced. The powerful ending was not foreseen and is powerful!

    One negative for me was the doctrinal issue about redemption through Communion. It’s actually in the Person we remember when taking Communion. I would also like the warning to recovering alcoholics placed at the end of the story instead of in the epilogue section. It’s vital.

    This book can be used for other issues than just alcoholism. There is Godly wisdom that can be gleaned for any situation men or women find themselves in.

    This book was provided by the author in exchange for my honest review. No monetary compensation was received.

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  • Posted March 30, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    It's easy to get addicted to this story

    A homeless man who looks forward to the drink that will bring him bliss. A small town mayor struggles to figure out how to combat a wave of unwanted visitors. A woman tries to help others but is secretly hiding her own past. A mysterious powder is found that will bring hope to millions that have been suffering. These elements are all brought together in Athol Dickson's Christy Award winning novel The Cure.

    Riley Keep is a former pastor who had been a missionary, with his wife, to a native tribe in Brazil. However, while he was down there, something happened to cause him to abandon his faith, his family, and his morals. Years have passed and he has become a homeless drunk, almost unrecognizable to anyone who knew him from the past. He finds himself at a homeless shelter in Dublin, Maine where he seeks to take refuge from the outside world. Dublin also happens to be the town where Riley's estranged wife is the mayor. While in Dublin, Riley comes across a package that contains a substance that could cure millions, and that many will fight and pay dearly to acquire.

    The setting of the novel, which takes place in a small Maine town, becomes another character in the story. The description of the area is convincing and Dickson uses the local usage of "Ayuh" to distinguish the townsfolk from their counterparts. This is a thought provoking novel that will leave the reader pondering long after finishing it. The whole story gives the reader the opportunity to think about what they would do in each situation and how a character might have had a totally different life if they had just changed one event. There are several instances where characters are faced with choices that may seem like a good idea at the time, but then are regretted later with painful side effects.

    The story starts off a little slowly. At times in the beginning, it's hard to keep up with each character. However once Riley finds the bag with "the cure", the story then takes off and the reader becomes hooked (no pun intended). The suspense begins to build up and characters begin reveal themselves, events in the past are given full explanation, and the homeless almost become like the waking dead as they hunt for something to sustain them. While alcohol usage and addiction are main focus points in the story, they are not shown in ways that would entice anyone. Instead the reader sees how alcoholism can have a negative effect on everyone and how even someone like a pastor is not immune to it. The storyline comes off very realistic as it is possible to see an event taking place like this in the near future. By the time the conclusion is reached, there is a self awakening that happens for both the characters in the story and the reader. This does not come from a sunny, happy fairy tale story, but instead with a grim, dark, and bitter reminder of how harsh life can sometimes be.

    The Cure deserves its Christy Award for suspense, as Dickson weaves a story that leaves the reader hanging on every word.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 1, 2008

    The Cure For Broken Lives

    Author Athol Dickson won a much coveted award for his 2006 release River Rising. Being aware of this it was with much anticipation that I awaited for his next release, The Cure. Riley Keep is washed up. Once a successful husband, father, teacher, pastor and missionary he's made a mess of his life in each of those areas. As the story begins Riley is homeless and an alcoholic surviving on the streets in Florida. But word has come around that there's hope in Maine. A cure for alcoholism. Riley and his friend, also an alcoholic, head out for Maine in hopes of finding there salvation from the demon spirits. As word has travels the local shelter and, indeed the whole town, are overrun with the homeless who seek shelter and hope. Along the way Riley Keep might just make a turn for the better in his spiraling downward life. When folks speak of the works of Athol Dickson you're bound to hear words like 'profound' and I couldn't agree more. Athol has a way of taking the most fallen of characters, making us care about them and follow them on their journey to redemption. Here in The Cure, as always, the characters are vibrant and real. Flawed and yet courageous. And this author's prose sings without being overwhelmingly poetic. This is one of those rare stories and rare authors. Athol and his stories are able to touch you deeply with a message of hope in Christ in a way that few can. Highly recommended! One of my Top 10 Novels of 2007.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 3, 2007

    Curious About THE CURE?

    Dangers in the Amazon, urban riots with homes torched, and innocent persons locked in an auto¿s trunk bring adrenaline at just the right time in Athol Dickson¿s latest and best novel, The Cure. Snaking through these events is the chimera of guilt indwelling Riley Keep, college professor, missionary, and homeless, hopeless alcoholic. In coastal Maine, miracles, or maybe an exotic drug, are sometimes healing, sometimes damning, a smattering of alcoholics. What will happen when Riley makes his way there? In Dickson¿s novels, Christians are not always good, and death doesn¿t necessarily spare the decent. Real life and real issues are delivered to the reader. Both exciting and edifying, The Cure sometimes kept me awake at night. Pure enjoyment!

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    fine character driven thriller

    Once he was a respected minister who taught at a prestigious school, a kind and gentle man who loved his wife and was happy to be with her as missionaries to bring Christ to a tribe known as The People. When tragedy strikes, Riley Keep felt responsible and ended up losing everything that meant something to him. He became a homeless alcoholic but in Florida he heard there was a cure for alcoholism in his hometown Dublin, Maine. --- He goes there more for his friend Brice who is slowly dying from the alcohol he puts in his body. He hopes there is a cure and when he reaches Dublin he stays at a shelter run by Willa Newdale. When Willa disappears and is presumed dead, evidence points at Riley as the killer. Riley pockets an envelope that has the formula for the cure inside it. He hires a lawyer to patent the formula and sells it to a pharmaceutical company to make it available to alcoholics even as Riley cleans himself up. When he learns the cure will cost a person $5000 denying it to the people who desperately need it, Riley needs to fix it so the price is lowered. --- The protagonist has hit rock bottom and finally tries to climb the ladder out of the ooze because of the two females he still loves and has missed for the last three years. Readers will wonder what made him fall so low but they will also empathize with his pain and suffering. He works hard to take care of his estranged family and he still has to change and find redemption so he can be the man he once was. his e. Riley is a good man trying very hard to make his family regain their respect for him and be proud of him. ---- Harriet Klausner

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