Last year, I greatly enjoyed judging the second annual ACM novel contest. (This year is in its judging phase, but that means it is perfect time to plan to submit for next year. All you have to do is write one little tiny novel 🙂 ) This contest is quite unique in that the finalists have the opportunity to work with one of the judges and improve their novels before the final decision is made. That final decision is based solely on the new version of the novel. Of course, every change is finally at the discretion of the author, and the judge generally refrains entirely from basic editorial comments. We try to help people see how to make their work more meaningful, more exciting, and more True. (See my previous post The Right Story Told True for what I mean.)
Now, enough bragging about the contest, I am actually here to brag about one of the authors I worked with last year. Actually, the only one I actually worked with, the others were less interested in continuing work on their novels. However, new author Chris Morrow was amazing, and I am actually posting to brag, not about the man, but about the novel, The Devil’s Choir. This was last year’s 2nd place winner of our novel contest is is available from Amazon and a bunch of different places. (that link goes to Amazon)
I will not really try to review the work, but I will talk about some of the aspects I thought were very good. I, of course, will not do too much talking about the plot, so that good part is left out. One of the most important things to talk about is enjoyability. It is well paced, (which means fast) and has thoroughly likable characters, inscrutable characters, and vicious characters. You get a faint wisp of some levels of an ancient conspiracy theory, but only enough to be intriguing. Another part of the book, patently about spiritual warfare, (The title should be a clue, but the website gives that much away.) is that probably every possible level of spiritual warfare is explored, clashes of Good versus Evil on many scales, in many dimensions. In some ways it harkens to Perelandra where the battle of Good and Evil came down to one middle age professor boxing another. I could mention many other strengths of the book, but I would likely give too much away. You can go to either the website or Amazon and read an excerpt or two (I think they may be different) and get a feel for the book. I definitely recommend it and after all, its only $5 (Kindle edition).
(I suppose a real blogger would say something like: Full Disclosure… I worked on this some… but I will have to say this: It may be possible that I am enthused by this book because Chris Morrow took so much of my advice that I began to think it might be good advice after all. 🙂 ) Here is the link again, you should at least go read the excerpt. I hope you enjoy it.