- Shopping Bag ( 0 items )
In the graveyard overlooking the city of Stonetree, a petrified oak broods. It’s a monstrous thing, not just because of its size, but because of who was murdered there. When Ruby Case limped into church that spring morning, she was not thinking about haunted trees. Mother of two young boys and wife to a backslidden believer, she faithfully prays for God’s visitation upon the city. Yet when she inexplicably raises a boy from the dead, Ruby gets more than she bargained for. The resurrection creates uproar in the ...
In the graveyard overlooking the city of Stonetree, a petrified oak broods. It’s a monstrous thing, not just because of its size, but because of who was murdered there. When Ruby Case limped into church that spring morning, she was not thinking about haunted trees. Mother of two young boys and wife to a backslidden believer, she faithfully prays for God’s visitation upon the city. Yet when she inexplicably raises a boy from the dead, Ruby gets more than she bargained for. The resurrection creates uproar in the quiet coastal town, turning Ruby into both a celebrity and a scapegoat. When Reverend Ian Clark joins Ruby in a search for answers it leads to a collision with unspeakable darkness. Together, they quickly realize that Ruby woke more than a dead boy, and the secrets she unleashed now threaten to destroy them all. Can they overcome their own brokenness before they become victims of an insidious evil?
Posted September 8, 2011
The Resurrection is a Peretti-style spiritual warfare novel. It takes place in a small town, with a preacher and certain members of his congregation smack in the center of the battleground.
First up--Ruby Case, church member. She's got rock-solid faith. Is she flawed? Well, she has a limp...but she's the kind of woman you would want babysitting your kids because she's loyal, trustworthy, and has a heart of gold. She really made me think about the whole "perfect Christian character" thing that is so prevalent in Christian fiction. It's actually not the "goodness" that makes those characters annoying. Ruby is "good." She doesn't have a seedy past or fatal flaw (unless you count a stubborn independent streak). Those are techniques used by some Christian authors to show that they have "flawed" Christian characters. But here's the truth--some Christians are just genuinely good people. The thing is, though, they are not pious. And the characters in Christian fiction who come across as annoyingly good are actually pious and self-righteous scripture-quoting cardboard cut-outs. Ruby is not. She 's got serious depth. So while I couldn't point my finger and say, "Look, see, he made her 'flawed' so this book is really edgy," I can say she was real.
Reverend Ian Clark...no rock solid faith here. More like rock slide. This guy is totally on the fence, full of doubts, feeling like a faker in front of his congregation. Talk about a flawed character. But it does come from somewhere. He's suffered some real loss that made him feel the way he does. My gripe? I would have liked to see more of that past. Some really emotional flashbacks that give me a clear picture of his love for and closeness to his sister whose death set him on the edge. It would have endeared him to me, and I would have connected to his pain. However, I couldn't help but wonder if Mike didn't include that stuff on purpose. Maybe he wanted us to see Clark as a big slug, so we spend the first half of the book thinking, "Man up, you big wuss."
Side characters: Jack is Ruby's loving and devoted husband, who has left the church because of its hypocrisy. Vin is Ruby's best friend. The tattooed ex-druggie has a strength Ruby wishes she could muster, and a faith that comes from true thankfulness for the grace God has shown her. Both characters added richness to the story. There are others, of course, but telling you much about them will just be giving spoilers....
The Conflict. Ruby's touch seemingly brings a dead boy back to life. The town is in an uproar. Half of them think she's a saint and people come to her with gifts and requests for miracles. The other half think she's a witch or worse. All she wants is to be left alone, and come to terms with the reason God used her. She ends up drawn into a search of the town's history, though, when echoes of her experience bring forth information about past events that are eerily familiar. Clark, of course, is turned to as the spiritual leader--but how can he fulfill this role when he holds so many doubts? Work in a section of town that seems steeped in new age religion and pagan idol worship, and a friend of Clark's who is tugging hard on his strings of doubt.
The Plot. Hm. In the end, I could say, "Well done." In the middle, I felt it was disjointed at times. Not that it was hard to follow. But there were times when I felt something was introduced, to then b
Posted September 5, 2011
Urban legends, hodgepodge religion, visions, ghosts, demons, warlocks, witches, curses! Oh, my! Enter a town hampered with ceaseless brooding skies, age-old secrets, and antediluvian gods of bloodlust. Did I miss anything? Without a doubt, because Mike Duran's "Resurrection" is filled to the brim and running over with sweet, detailed line after line of the darkest portents. Maybe this review's title should have been, "Something Wicked This Way Comes". Brace yourself for this American Gothic delight.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 9, 2011
"The Resurrection" recounts the hidden secrets of Stonetree, a small coastal town in California. While attending the funeral of young Armondo Amaya, Ruby Case took her turn in line with family and friends to pay their final respect to the young boy. On an impulse Ruby reached out to touch the body. After a short prayer; when she removed her hand Mondo suddenly sat up in his coffin. A chain of events that follow Mondo's resurrection take the reader into the conflict between a naturalist explanation and a super-naturalist viewpoint. Controversy erupts in the Stonetree community. Ruby becomes both a hero and a scapegoat. She joins forces with Rev. Ian Clark in a determined effort to find the truth. Although Duran's characters are uniquely developed, it was hard for me to genuinely identify with any of them. The protagonists lacked dimension. Even in their strongest moments they did not come across as real. Duran's creative imagination is contagious. A note for Christian readers: "The Resurrection" is a book for the reader who is willing to allow their imagination to take them "outside of the box" of their comfortable theology in areas of the supernatural, ghosts, demons, and the power of curses. A challenge to live a life of genuine commitment to follow Christ and His teaching is presented throughout the book without feeling "preachy." "The Resurrection" is entertaining, informative, and thought provoking fiction. I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the publisher with in consideration of a fair and honest review. As reviewed for Midwest Book Review.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 23, 2011
When Ruby Case, an unassuming crippled woman, inexplicably raises a boy from the dead, she creates uproar in the quiet coastal town of Stonetree. Some brand her a witch, others a miracle worker. Yet Reverend Ian Clark could care less. Dogged by demons and immersed in self-pity, Clark is being unwittingly drawn into a secret religious order--one that threatens his very life. But he's about to get a wake-up call.
Together, Ruby and Reverend Clark are thrust into a search for answers... and a collision with unspeakable darkness. For behind the quaint tourist shops and artist colonies lies a history of deceit. And a presence more malignant than anything they can imagine. Yet a battle is brewing, the resurrection is the first volley, and the unlikely duo are the only ones who can save them. But can they overcome their own brokenness in time to stop the evil, or will they be its next victim?
I received The Resurrection by Mike Duran compliments of Christian Science Fiction and Fantasy Blog Tour for my honest review and once again I am drawn into this wonderful story that will hold you captivated until the very end. It's so refreshing to have Christian writers like Mike Duran pick up a story that hold Christian traditions and faith at its core and keep the reader engaged. I rate this book a 5 out of 5 stars! Just the cover of the book alone will make you want to pick this up and read it! This book is available in paperback format.
Posted February 13, 2011
Each city has its own spiritual environment, unique with its own atmosphere that creates a passageway to the supernatural. Much like our own cities and towns, Stonetree holds a spiritual atmosphere that has opened a door to a realm of mystery, darkness, and faith. When Ruby Case, a crippled woman with a simple faith, resurrects a young boy from the dead the town's secrets are also restored to life. Was the resurrection a bonafide miracle or could it be related to the Stonetree curse? That is what Ian Clark, the reverend of Canyon Springs Community Church, which Ruby attends, is going to find out. As Reverend Clark searches for the truth about the resurrection, he finds himself charting unfamiliar territory as the secrets of his own past and the towns unfold. The people of Stonetree have only one hope, a wandering Reverend and a crippled woman. Interwoven with faith, fear, courage, doubt, and a drive to find the truth, both Ian Clark and Ruby find themselves together at a cross-road of decisions. Will their decisions lead them to unearthing the curse that has plagued the town of Stonetree for many generations, or will they find their faith overpowered by supernatural forces that has driven others away in previous years?
Mike Duran paints a beautiful picture of what real faith looks like when we are faced with powers that are greater than us. He has an incredible ability to bring the characters to life, and creates a descriptive backdrop that would cause anyone to become part of the story. I found myself relating to the different characters in The Resurrection, especially Ruby Case. I could relate to her child-like faith, and her connection with an autistic girl named Jilly who has the ability to see angels. This book is a must read for anyone who seeks supernatural warfare, and an edge of your seat thrill.
I have received a complimentary copy of The Resurrection by Mike Duran from Strang Book Group as part of the book review program. The view and opinions are my own.
Posted February 3, 2011
Ruby Case, a crippled woman, faithfully attends Canyon Springs Community Church where Reverend Ian Clark is the pastor. Ruby leads a small prayer group of three women who are asking God to shake things up and reveal His power. One Sunday morning, as they are gathered in prayer before the morning service, Ruby has a vision of a dead tree with one green leaf. After the service, five-year old Jilly gives Ruby a picture she drew of the vision Ruby had just hours before. Later on, that afternoon, Ruby attends the funeral of a boy. As Ruby files past the casket, she stops at the body, prays, then begins to exit. The dead boy sits up in the casket, resurrected.
Not only is God's power unleashed in this town, but also the demons from hell. From those attempting to buy Ruby's prayers, to those seeking true healing, Ruby remains firm in her faith throughout this book. Pastor Clark wrestles, mentally and physically with the darkness, as God reveals that the gray is actually black. The unresolved past of some of the characters is revealed, as they witness the power of God and the strength of other gods.
On most review sites, we are only permitted to give books five stars. I wish I could give this book ten stars; I loved it that much! Mike Duran's style and this plot was easy to follow.
Before you read this book, turn to the back and read the Afterword, "What is Mr. Cellophane?" This will give you the author's Biblical perspective of the spirit world and give you greater understand of this work. I always enjoy literature that causes me to question and think in a new perspective. These areas included:
?As followers of Christ, there is strength in numbers when we pray.
?There are only two realms - Light and Dark
?If we are not serving God, we are serving another god...called Satan
?Finally, and this was a lightbulb moment, the gods (demons) that we are wrestling and fighting against, are they the same gods of Baal, etc. that Elijah and prophets of the Old Testament were fighting, but today in a different form?
?We need to call on the power of the Lord with as much force and strength as the prophets of old.
Posted August 9, 2011
No text was provided for this review.