Official Review: Always Before Me by John Servant

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Official Review: Always Before Me by John Servant

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[Following is an official review of "Always Before Me" by John Servant.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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How far can you go to stand for what you believe? When push comes to shove, will you be able to stand with your values regardless of the cost? These are the kinds of questions that Always Before Me by John Servant raises.

It was the wake of Father Anthony, who died of lung cancer. Father Richard had come to pay his final respects to a holy man. Sitting there alone, he was reminiscing on the life of the priest whose remains lay in the casket before him. While the thoughts were going through his head, another priest, Father Paul, came to mind. Father Anthony and Father Paul both died in prison, albeit for different reasons.

While Father Richard was lost in thought, a young man walked into the small room where the wake was going on. The young man was John Daly, the late Father Anthony's nephew. John came because he was informed of his uncle's death, and the possessions his uncle left for him. The only thing John knew about his uncle was the accusation of molesting a young girl leveled against him. There was something about Father Anthony that John didn't know. What could this be?

Always Before Me is one of the three Catholic novels written by John Servant. The book is deeply rooted in Catholicism and all the beliefs associated with it. Both the major and minor characters in this book have a connection to the Catholic Church. The practices, prayers, and setting all project Catholicism in its fullest expression. You have to have a Catholic foundation or an idea of their beliefs and practices to follow most parts of the story in this book. The author shows his deep roots and vast knowledge of the Catholic Church.

I applaud the author's writing skills. I have read a couple of religious novels in recent times and have been utterly disappointed. For most of these books, it was more about projecting the religion than building on a story. I usually have difficulty understanding the plot. But, John showed me in this book that a religious novel could also appeal to everyone. He did well to cater to the reading needs of religious and non-religious readers alike. He showed the utmost respect when talking about people of a different faith. Most importantly, there was a story to follow and lessons to learn from the book.

What I liked most was the way the author infused different writing styles to make the book fun and engaging. He used flashbacks to narrate the backstory effectively. He seamlessly connected it to the beginning of the book. It made the book more interesting than it was at the beginning. The author also used suspense to keep me anticipating. I fell for the temptation of predicting specific outcomes only for the author to shatter them with the twists and turns. This book also elicited different emotions at different points for me. I was excited, sad, angry, surprised, and encouraged while reading this book. I thoroughly enjoyed the story.

I only found one error in the book, but it wasn't enough to take away any point. There was nothing I disliked about this book as it was well-written and professionally edited. I rate it four out of four stars. I recommend it specifically to anyone who enjoys religious novels. People who are opposed to religion can also read it as there wasn't any prejudice in the narrative.

Always Before Me
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Post by Kachi_Ejiogu+_ »

The infusion of different writing styles to make the book fun and engaging is one of the best things any reader can ask for. Great and apt review!
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Post by DBNJ »

I appreciate the author's attempt at discussing a different subject although this genre is not my speciality.Thank you for the descriptive review.
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Post by JKO »

When push comes to shove, will you be able to stand with your values regardless of the cost?
This is a question that talks directly to our faith. I am a catholic and I would love to read this one. Thanks for the excellent review.
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Post by Ediomis_Enwongo01 »

On a daily basis life posses different thought provoking questions. The book attempt to unravel these questions that are 'Always before me'. Thanks for the review.
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Post by Zee_Zee »

I think the author did a great job with his infusion of writing styles and also making this book, a book for all. Nice review!
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Post by Michelle Fred »

This is a first; most religious book authors make it seem like you have to choose between a good plot and being preached to. It's rare to find an author that combines both elements seamlessly, I'm impressed by John's work.
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Post by purpleroseberry »

I like how you pointed out that the story focused on building both the faith as well as the plot, and that it doesn't offend other faiths. Thanks for the review.
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Post by J_odoyo »

Sounds like a nice Christian read. I'm not much into Catholic beliefs, and I think that might affect my enjoyment of this book. Otherwise thanks for your nice review.
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Post by Adanna Inya »

Wow! I stay away from religious books but this could be my first. What's the secret about Father Anthony? Who knows?
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Post by Magnify3 »

Thanks for this review. It seems to be an interesting read. Full of secrets too.
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Post by Michelle Menezes »

While the mystery around Father Anthony is interesting, I'm not fond of books with religious themes. Since this book focuses deeply on Catholic beliefs, I'll be skipping it.
Great review!
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Post by Ify-babe »

A religious book with an interesting storyline. Great review too.
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Post by Arlyn Limpiada »

It's an interesting storyline. The author have a great job in infusing his writings especially the style. It's for building our faith. Thanks for this review.
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Post by Leen282 »

Without enough knowledge of christianity, this book may be difficult for me to follow. Even if the author wrote a novel that can appeal to everyone. I am not sure what to think of it now.
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