Favorite Quotes on Books and Reading

"A book is a gift you can open again and again." Garrison Keillor

Literature is a textually transmitted disease, normally contracted in childhood.” Jane Yolen

"It is what you read when you don't have to that determines what you will be when you can't help it." Oscar Wilde

"Books have furnished, burnished, and enabled my life." Julia Keller

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Book 14: THE HIDDEN ONES Review


The Hidden Ones by Nancy Madore
ISBN: 9781479321209 (paperback)
ASIN: B009R4CJB8 (Kindle ebook)
Publication date: November 12, 2012 (Kindle edition)
Publication date: January 10, 2013 (paperback)



LEGACY OF THE WATCHERS (the series)


A historical, speculative, science fiction adventure

Thousands of years ago something came out of the sky that changed the course of human history. Testimonies abound of these 'angels' and their hybrid offspring, the 'Nephilim' giants. These mighty 'gods' quickly rose to power, and the ancient world came alive with industry and culture. People who lived for hundreds of thousands of years as hunters and gatherers suddenly began settling in one place, cultivating the land and even governing themselves. They invented irrigation, the wheel and algebra. Yet amidst all this progress, an undercurrent of terror was spreading like wildfire, carrying whispers of 'djinn,' 'daeva' and 'demons.' 

The Watchers were supposed to do just that: watch. But humankind proved far too tempting and they 'fell' to earth, taking wives and even producing children. But their children grew into unruly giants whose souls didn't ascend like human souls when they die, but remained here on earth. These errant souls haunt the earth to this day. They are the 'djinn,' the 'hidden ones,' also known as 'daeva' and 'demon.' They have one purpose—to live. But to live they need bodies. 

This chain of events has now reached the point where the djinn need more than just our bodies to survive. They must take back control of the earth, just as in the days when they ruled as gods. 

The Hidden Ones (book one) 

As CEO of her own thriving company, Nadia Adeire is flush with success, but a secret society dating back to the Essenes believes her to be one of the ancient djinn—the notorious demoness of Hebrew legend, Lilith. What’s more, they have reason to believe that she’s plotting a catastrophic attack on the world. 

Nadia is snatched from her 'perfect' life and caught in a maze between a present day disaster and the ancient legends of the djinn. The only way out is to retrace the steps of her deceased grandmother, Helene. The deeper Nadia delves into the past, the harder it will be for her to emerge unscathed. But it’s the only way to stop this impending disaster that was set in motion five thousand years ago!

Helene Trevelyan, a British citizen, traveled with her father, Robert Trevelyan - an archeologist, to the Middle East in 1948. Her father and three other archeologists were searching for a Sumerian Book of the Dead and thought it might have been found in Qumran. Helene was only seventeen years old in 1948 and what she witnessed will forever impact not only her life but her offspring for generations. Helene bore witness to the resurrection of a Nephilim or djinn, the infamous Lilith. 

Helene was unknowingly forced into marriage with an Arab and lived as a second-wife to Aabid in Saudi Arabia until her death. Helene and Aabid's daughter, Gisele, is allowed to leave as the wife to Helene's childhood friend, Edward Adeire. Edward and Gisele eventually wind up as residents of the United States and parents to a daughter, Nadia. Fast forward a few decades and Nadia is kidnapped and taken to Saudi Arabia. Why? Because her kidnappers believe that she is the key to capturing Lilith and averting a worldwide disaster. Nadia insists she knows nothing about this impending disaster and that she never even met her grandmother. The only thing she does know are the stories told to her by her mother, as they were told by her grandmother. Little does she know that these stories hold the key to the myths and reality of the Nephilim and Lilith. But will she realize the truth in time to save the world from the machinations of the Nephilim?

First, let me say that although I enjoy watching the occasional science fiction television show or movie, I'm not real big on speculative science fiction reads. However, Ms. Madore has deftly woven ancient myths, folklore and religious views into an intriguing read. The stories of Lilith, Asmodeous and the other Nephilim from ancient times was quite interesting. I found it a little farfetched that Nadia would be able to recite their stories and incorporate dialogue verbatim, but that's a relatively minor issue. Ms. Madore goes to great lengths to even try and explain how the notion of these Nephilim became distorted over time and might be the root of the vampire myths. There's a lot of historical information woven into The Hidden Ones but it does become difficult to separate history from myth if one isn't familiar with either. At times it was hard to decide who the bad guys were in this story. The kidnappers are out to save the world from outside influences and are willing to do whatever it takes to do so. But isn't this the same rationale used by extremists around the world? 

As a Muslim, I had difficulty with some of the behaviors exhibited by the so-called Muslims in the story, specifically with Aabid and his family in the late 1940s and mid 1960s. (I found their behavior to be based more on cultural traditions that have been subsumed into regional religious practices rather than religious dictates.) Yet I must say that their behavior is probably not too far removed from the regional, cultural traditions at that time. 

Nadia and Helene are presented as strong women that endure quite a bit at the hands of men, but both emerge victorious. The physical attraction between Nadia and one of the kidnappers is initially explained away as Stockholm Syndrome but is later built upon as a relationship. It took me awhile to get into this story, primarily because of the subject matter and secondarily because of numerous migraine headaches, but once I got halfway through I was hooked and had to know how it would end. Unfortunately, this is just the first in a series so I may never know how it really ends. This wasn't an easy or quick read for me due to the genre but it was an interesting and different read that I rather enjoyed. If you enjoy speculative science fiction mixed with history and touches of romance and adventure, then The Hidden Ones may be just the read for you.


Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book free for review purposes from the author. I was not paid, required or otherwise obligated 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."


Buy the Book:









icon
icon

No comments:

Post a Comment