I’ve been asked to read a lot of books in my life, and usually I say, “yes.” I mean am I really going to say, “no,” to a free book? What made The Raven’s Gift by Don Rearden different is that I didn’t regret saying, “yes.” It was exciting, at times page-turning, and even a little scary.
The story is of a teacher in a remote Alaskan village. When everyone in the village becomes mysteriously and terribly ill, John decides to venture out across the frozen landscape. He encounters a blind girl and an old woman he can’t make himself leave behind and they must try to survive both the harsh elements and the elusive hunter whose tracks they keep crossing.
The story follows three separate timelines: before the illness, the beginning of John’s journey, and later in John’s journey. While the shifting timeline threw me for a few chapters, I eventually became used to it. As a technique for creating suspense it worked well–always making me wait a little longer to find out the answers to my questions.
Which brings me to my only negative about the book. At the end (no spoilers) I didn’t feel like all my questions had been answered. I should say, the ending felt intentional and it wasn’t incomplete; I just personally wanted a little bit more.
The Raven’s Gift is perfectly placed in reality. The story is believable as something that could happen in our own world, which makes it all the more scary. But with just the right touch of spiritual elements, it’s the kind of story that makes you ponder the boundaries of reality and wonder what is really going on.
Denver area residents will have to order their copy online (or here at Amazon Canada) as it is not yet available in local bookstores.