Published in 2016 and written by Romanian author Carmen Stefanescu.
Barbara Heyer has been able to communicate with the spirits of the deceased ever since she lost her grandfather when she was a child. And it was while driving her car that she heard a female voice, named Kathleen, telling her she had just been murdered. Barbara did not have the chance to figure out whose voice was it until later when the news of her brother Colin’s girlfriend’s death was revealed. As a consequence, Colin became the main suspect of the crime.
Detective Patrick Fischer is assigned to the case and will team up with Barbara and use her power to work along with the police and try to prove Colin’s innocence. But in the process, what they’re about to discover goes way beyond current circumstances and they will be thrown back in time in order for them to understand where they really come from and why they’re together in this venture at this time. There might be a stronger connection between them than the one they’re working on.
Time passes by with no results, until Catherine, Barbara’s neighbor, comes to scene claiming she knows how to find out Kathleen’s murderer’s identity. It appears that only a past life regression will shed some light on the matter and hopefully clear up all confusion. Though it won’t happen any time soon as they wished, they’re confident that with time everything will settle down again and Colin will get his life back to normal.
The story deals with reincarnation and past lives that intertwine together since centuries ago, showing how unfinished businesses need to come to a purposed end and reach a full circle for all humans. The explanation of a recurrent dream in one’s life might be attached to a traumatic incident in a past life, as well as the reason for us to have a natural talent in certain area without apparent logical sense. Even though stated as a hypothesis, it gives you a sense of relief that everything happens for a reason and that all will come to a happy end at some point, just maybe not in this lifetime.
I really liked how the book was written, this is, how the events were distributed in the narrative; I loved the leap to the past episode which was embedded into the main story, however it seemed to be detached you've got to wait to see what's coming up next. It was like reading a whole new story where we get to know new characters and how they dealt with their lives in an old fashion way we may find rather outdated, nonetheless interesting and educational; to finally go back to the original stream and reveal how they’re related to present characters and events. This part of the book clearly depicts what the woman’s role was in the old days and how much injustice she had to endure to merely keep her life if so. It really gets you to feel sorry and at the same time relieved that those days are gone for good.
I also loved the rich description of every chapter; the author displays such creativity and abundance of adjectives that you can clearly see the image in your mind. No doubt the author knows how to hook up her readers right away, she certainly masters the expertise of conveying a story providing with the right dose of intrigue and diligence, and I must admit this book kept me wanting for more and more every time I went through its pages. It was never boring, scenes and chapters had the right length and therefore the story flowed rhythmically for the most part.
And I said the most part because, although I’m giving five stars to this book, there’s a point I’d like to address here: The story somehow speeds up a little towards the end by unfolding events as they have already passed from the perspective of the ‘survivors’; as a result losing a chunk of the suspense which quite frankly disappointed me a bit. From my point of view the denouement is one the most crucial moments of a novel and it needs to be told at the same pace as less transcendent episodes were described throughout the story. Fortunately there’s a final surprise that makes up for it in this work, you’ll see; an unexpected twist that makes you hold your breath for a while but it was all for the best. All in all this is a fantastic book I would definitely recommend if you like paranormal and such subjects that is.
Over all this is a great novel and one of the best novels I’ve read; I undoubtedly will be reading other books of this author, so keep tune for new reviews on Carmen Stefanescu books.
Check out Shadows of the Past
Check out Shadows of the Past