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text 2019-12-16 10:51

 

 

The 36 Watchers: Book I: Fall

Dan Bar Hava

Publisher: Austin Macauley Publishers LLC

 Release date: May 1, 2019

ASIN: B07RF1G1ZZ

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B07RF1G1ZZ

 

Reviewed by: Dr. Wesley Britton

 

Dan Bar Hava's first novel is a dense, richly imaginative first book in a projected series of at least three parts. It is an epic that is ruddered by the journey of Jenna Berg, starting with her professional life in New York, then through a series of alternate realities, looks into historical events that might have been different and world-changing, and then takes her into her surprising and unexpected changing identity.

 

Jenna's life story includes her uncle Josh, a man who turns out to be one of the ancient 36 watchers. He's grooming Jenna, and her latent powers, to replace him in the order. Along the way, Jenna and we readers learn quite a bit about global myths as recorded in holy scriptures, especially the Talmud. We see important milestones the watchers set in motion like the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. It had to happen to ensure the eventual fall of the Roman empire.

We learn the watchers crossed over millennia ago from a realm that included no matter.  They were "energy creatures, swimming in the cosmic ocean. Flickering across time and space, not even that. Maybe non-time or non-space is a better description."  Transformed into beings composed of matter, they became mankind's guardian angels to battle the evil that could overtake the world if not for their vigilance.

 

Bar Hava paints his portrait with considerable detail, bringing his characters to life as well as the descriptions of the changing perspectives Jenna encounters and crosses through as her evolution into becoming a reluctant watcher drives the story forward.

 

One weakness, for this reviewer, was the confusion I felt when the story shifts gears and not always in a clear, understandable transition. Readers hoping for a lighter kind of sci-fi will find themselves challenged and perhaps unsettled. For me, one future for the United States the Watchers want to ensure doesn't happen is a very frightening possibility that is  a horror far different from more typical fictional dystopias.

 

Readers who like cerebral, intellectual stories will likely fall quickly in love with this novel.  Me, I'm looking forward to the sequels.

 

On Fri. Dec. 13, reviewer Wes Britton participated in an author interview/ review video for Jasveena R Prabhagaran's International Book Promotions. You can meet author Dan Bar Hava and hear the reviews at:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zBfGtt9yTiU

 

This review first appeared at BookPleasures.com on Sat. Dec, 14, 2019:

https://waa.ai/OMLi

 

 

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review 2019-10-23 19:14
We Are Watchers, All of Us
Watchers - Dean Koontz

Well damn, a Dean Koontz book made me cry. The last one that made me cry was "Odd Thomas." This book hits me everywhere. Though I could have done without the whole ssnap guy (Vince) the rest of the book just works perfectly. I loved the characters (Travis and Nora) I fell in love with Einstein and also with everyone along the way who wanted to keep Einstein free. This book hits all the feels and I can see now why after the success of this book Koontz had to just have a dog in every book he put out. I still wish he stop that though.


"Watchers" starts off with Travis Cornell out in the mountains when he comes across a golden retriever. The animal will not allow Travis to cross down a path in the woods and feeling something ominous, Travis ends up taking the dog home with him. Over time Travis starts to realize that the dog he nicknames fur face and then calls "Einstein" is quite special. 

 

We then transition over to Nora Devon who is living alone in her dead aunt's home. Nora's aunt was not loving and constantly told Nora how she was not pretty enough, a mouse (not a cat) and how she would be better off staying away from men. Now that she's gone Nora feels adrift, but wants to change her life. Things do change for her when she comes across Travis and Einstein in a park after a terrible encounter with a man who is hell-bent on stalking Nora.


And then Koontz introduces a crazed killer (Vince) who has ties to Einstein in some way we don't know and then a mysterious agency man who is tracking to track down Einstein as well. 

 

Koontz develops all of the characters (except Vince) quite well. We even are able to get shifting points of views about something darker than Vince that appears to be after Einstein as well. Koontz always goes over board in my opinion with his villains and Vince was definitely too much for me. 


The writing really works here and a few times can move a reader to tears. The flow actually works as well though I admit I started skipping Vince's sections because they were too grim even for me. Also Vince seems to be a precursor to the killer in Koontz's "Intensity" novel. One of these days I will get around to posting a review for that book too. 

 

“Plain, homely women like you and me will never lead a glamorous life, never go to exotic places. So books have a special value to us. We can experience most everything vicariously, through books. This isn’t bad. Living through books is even better than having friends and knowing . . . men.”

 

Good lord. I love books but this whole sentiment had me wanting to hug Nora. Her aunt was vile.

 

"We have a responsibility to stand watch over one another, we are watchers, all of us, watchers, guarding against the darkness."

 

We do and this sentence actually made me cry. 


The setting of the book takes place in the late 1980s. Half the things that Travis and Nora do to avoid detection would probably be impossible now and I pretty much laughed at Travis making a ton of money in real estate. That said, the heart of the story (two people who love a dog) is what keeps this story so timeless. At least in my head.


The ending was delightful and I loved every bit of this terrific book. 

 

Image result for a retriever gif

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text 2019-10-22 21:11
Reading progress update: I've read 30%.
Watchers - Dean Koontz

Must. Stop. Laughing.

 

"Travis made no reference to what had happened and pretended to have forgotten the whole affair. But when he had the dog’s attention, and when Nora was not looking, he mouthed threats at the mutt: No more apple tarts. Choke chain. Muzzle. Straight to the dog pound. Einstein took every threat with great equanimity, either grinning or yawning or blowing air out his nostrils."

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text 2019-10-22 20:18
Reading progress update: I've read 19%.
Watchers - Dean Koontz

A great book to read for Halloween bingo. 


Yes there's a dog, I assume it's super smart. Yes there's a man, he's retired Special Forces. Yes there's a woman. But somehow this works though. I like Einstein (the dog), Travis and Nora. Now though the three of them haven't met (Travis has met and taken in Einstein) but Nora has a stalker issue going on. I like the backstory on everyone so far. There's a random killer (as there usually is in Koontz books) named Vince going around killing people going sssnap (not a misspelling) and it's getting old. 

 

Image result for mindhunters gif

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review 2018-06-27 14:26
Weight Watchers Crock Pot Recipes
Weight Watchers: Weight Watchers Freestyle 2018: Weight Watchers Freestyle 2018 Crockpot: Quick and Easy Weight Watchers Freestyle 2018 Crockpot Recipes - Missy Houck

This was another that I was not thrilled with, mostly the layout. I also didn't find too many recipes that I wanted to make. 

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