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Posted September 23, 2013
Posted July 8, 2011
William Reynolds has a smart, dialogue-rich and confrontational style of writing within his story of epic proportions titled, Sanctify. In a very "Nine-Ten" world (which means pre-9-11), American society was dealing with many issues while evolving during our post WWII culture. Events such as the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, the Vietnam War, peace rallies, racial movements, pot-smoking hippies along with Rock & Roll music were all gaining momentum. Plus the Black Panthers were coming into power, the Cuban Bay of Pigs and subsequent nuclear escalation brought our country to the brink of annihilation, communists were being weeded out from our society, and contraceptives such as the birth control pill fueled the sexual revolution. The American culture was a stew of radical changes, while the radicals themselves were changing as they were a young generation coming of age. The secret ops of the military had their own agenda as to how to direct the flow of change, and needed people to do their dirty work that were "off the radar." How best to disappear? Die.
This is what happened to the Jesus, a marine sniper. He had stepped into an explosive booby trap in Vietnam, or so it was officially stated and believed. Although a casket was buried, complete with military honors, there was no body inside. Hence, like Jesus of Nazareth, Jesus from Tennessee also "rose from the dead" to perform missions for the government without being seen by friends, family or traced by those in power by claiming plausible deniability. Like so much in our legal system, if you can't prove it, it never happened. His brother catches wind of this and peruses to investigate the validity of the military's claim of loss. As he gets closer to the truth, more layers of deception become apparent as the reader is sucked into the whirlpool of clandestine missions, as things are not what they appear.
William Reynolds weaves his own tapestry of events into a novel that goes beyond simple conspiracy theories, and recounts with military terminology and minutia of detail many circumstantial series of possible events which may change the reader's perspective on reality. Turning incredible into credible, his talent for controversial theory development is unparalleled. What is seemingly fiction becomes a basis of facts as his characters are played like a violin to the government's tune of secrecy. Will the truth be revealed?
Sanctify is, in my opinion, a guy's book. The vernacular is guy talk; the military details are guy trivia, the ego and motivation of the characters are guy's behavior patterns. So gals, buy this book as a present for the guy in your life; that is if you want him to disappear by burying his nose in something other than you. At almost 500 pages, this book takes a few sittings to penetrate and absorb. Even the epilogue is nearly 50 pages, as William Reynolds sews up the characters and puts them to rest in the curiosity of the reader's mind. If you have the time, say taking an Amtrak trip, this book is a wonderful companion. If not, be forewarned the captivating subject matter may compel you to invest an unduly proportion of your days due to the intoxicating scenario of alternate history so eloquently comprised.