Death be Not Proud: The Secret of the Journal - eBook
A bit of a muddle really
I liked the first book and was looking forward to the second, but found it a disappointment. First, it doesn't make sense to me to write a book that is "christian fiction" and then completely deviate from historical christianty. If you want to write fantasy, and remain in the christian genre, I think spiritual warfare, apocalyptic or false prophets would work better. Immortals? not so much. I just thought it was a stretch and showed a basic lack of comprehension of what the Christian faith is about.
Secondly, the main character is hardly christian (unless she has in mind a redemption theme for book three). I see this rather more than I would like to in christian fiction. She doesn't go to church or ever interact with other believers. How can one be a part of the Body of Christ without belonging to a community of believers? There simply is no such thing as a Lone Ranger Christian and I don't approve of misleading readers. If you are not writing to build up the Kingdom of God (rather than just your own little kingdom), then what is the point? Please just stick to secular fiction. Remember that you will have to answer to God for what you are putting out there.
Third, I thought it could have done with a better job of editing. The writing came off as somewhat mediocre.
July 25, 2013
History, Mystery and Suspense
C. F. Dunn in her new book, "Death Be Not Proud" Book Two in The Secret Of The Journal series published by Monarch Books continues the adventure of Emma D'Eresby in a contemporary thriller.
From the back cover: Following the vicious attack by a psychotic colleague, and reeling from the suspicion that Matthew Lynes is not all that he seems, Professor Emma D'Eresby flees her college teaching position in Maine to her hometown in England- taking the mysterious seventeenth-century journal she stole from the college's archives with her.
Broken physically and emotionally, Emma drifts until, fearing for their daughter's sanity, her parents invite a family friend to assess her. In the course of their conversation, Emma discovers that he spoke to Matthew over thirty years before.
This finally spurs her into action and soon, when she finds what certainly must be a reference to Matthew in the journal, she begins to understand Matthew's profound secret.
But when Matthew arrives to confess his love for her, she must decide if she can trust him-and he must decide if he can share his extraordinary secret with her. Drawn by a deep connection that both feel but don't quite understand they find they must set aside their doubts and trust each other.
Readers will be thrilled by the second installment in The Secret of the Journal from British author C. F. Dunn. Mixing suspense, romance, and the supernatural, Death Be Not Proud explores the profound moral implications of a life seemingly invulnerable to time.
The adventure and suspense continue as Emma returns home to her parents in England to rest and recuperate from the events of book one. She also wants to get away from Matthew, read the journal and sort things out. Obviously that was not going to happen as Matthew appears on her doorstep and offers to take her back to America. Through bits we learn from the doctor in England, the journal and from Matthew himself we find all is not what it seems. And even though Emma has feelings for him I have to say I, personally, do not trust this guy. "Death Be Not Proud" is also a mystery filled with twists and turns that will make a roller coaster kneel in surrender. I think C. F. Dunn is an extremely talented writer who really knows how to tell a story that will grab you and keep you flipping pages until you find out what is going on. "Death Be Not Proud" is a very exciting book that will keep you engrossed in the characters. I am looking forward to all being revealed in the next book.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Monarch Books. 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."
August 17, 2013
sequel that does not stand alone
This is a sequel to Mortal Fire. If you have not read that book, you will be utterly lost in this one. This is not a stand alone novel.
In this novel, Emma has returned to heal from the vicious attack. She is troubled and her parents think she needs psychiatric help. Emma is determined to try and understand who Matthew is and where he has come from. She pursues her idea until she finally arrives at a run down cottage where an old woman has some clues for her. Emma also has the journal her grandfather so desired and that gives her clues as well. What she finds out is nearly beyond her own understanding.
I was disappointed in this novel. It does not seem to move the story along very much. Granted, we find out the most unusual characteristic about Matthew, but its significance is left for the next novel, I guess. Having read the first novel in the series, this one is not nearly as good as it is.
Emma is not the most attractive of heroines. She is just not smart or wise in her decisions and actions. And Matthew, well, I don't feel like anything really positive about Matthew came out in this novel. He has consistently lied to Emma. And with his unusual characteristics, he could really be a force for good, yet he does not appear to be one. So I am disappointed in him too.
On the positive side, this is classic British fiction. There are pages of characters thinking. There are great locations that are well described. And you do learn some history too.
The Christianity of the characters is there but it is more of a cultural aspect rather than a Ã¢ÂÂborn againÃ¢ÂÂ experience we think about in the US. Emma has had a commitment of her faith but that doesn't seem to stop her, at times, from being willing to go too far in her relationship with Matthew. He is the strong one there. There is some language, so just be aware of that.
If you like British fiction, want a little mystery, some (almost) steamy romance, and a hint of the paranormal (or something else odd going on), than this novel may be for you. But be sure you read the first in the series or you will undoubtedly be lost and unable to appreciate the story in this one.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Kregel for the purpose of this review.
August 14, 2013
This story picks up right where Mortal Fire left off. Emma DÃ¢ÂÂEresby has fled to London with her parents to recover being attacked. She has left the man she loves, Matthew Lynes, behind in America. Emma is in shock and mentally unstable. She wonÃ¢ÂÂt eat and just lies in bed all day. Her parents are very concerned and want her to seek psychiatric help. Emma slowly begins to come out of her daze and do what she does bestÃ¢ÂÂ¦research history. She has very little to go on, but is determined to find out all she can about Matthew Lynes. She has an idea now what his secret it, but must be sure before she admits her love for him. She has Ã¢ÂÂborrowedÃ¢ÂÂ the journal her grandfather told her about from the college in America where she was working and reads it for clues. She learns about her family tree and does indeed get more information on MatthewÃ¢ÂÂs past. She sends him a message, indicating she has discovered his secret. How will he react? Will he be angry? Will he shun any further contact with her?
Emma journeys to an old farm/manor to follow a clue from the journal. What she finds causes her to faint dead away. What does she discover? Matthew comes to England to take Emma back to America so they can discuss his past, her past and their future together. Matthew is a fount of historical information, which Emma craves as this is her profession and one of her main joys in life. She identifies more with the past than the present. What other secrets has Matthew been keeping from Emma?
I read the first book in this series and enjoyed it. This second book started off okay, but then readers discover MatthewÃ¢ÂÂs abilities. I got that he was different from the first book, but I wasnÃ¢ÂÂt expecting paranormally different. Matthew has superhuman strength, doesnÃ¢ÂÂt eat and is immune to cold or hot temperatures to name a few things. Then, when Emma discovers he has lied about being a widower, she continues her romantic relationship with him! There are a few curse words in the book, but not enough to distract readers. However, I donÃ¢ÂÂt feel this should be marketed and targeted to a Christian audience. There are references to Emma wearing a cross necklace, but we donÃ¢ÂÂt read about her sharing her faith or applying scriptural truth to her problems, and her two best friends at the American college, Elena and Matias, arenÃ¢ÂÂt married, but are having a sexual relationship. While Emma and Matthew donÃ¢ÂÂt physically consummate their relationship as he is still married, there is still kissing, touching and love involved in their very Ã¢ÂÂunplatonicÃ¢ÂÂ relationship. This seemed to me to read like a secular paranormal love story with some vague Christian references thrown in. There wasnÃ¢ÂÂt much suspense or mystery I was looking for as Ã¢ÂÂthe secret of the journalÃ¢ÂÂ seems to imply. I wouldnÃ¢ÂÂt recommend this book.
My rating is 2 stars.
August 13, 2013