3 out of 4 stars
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Jane was a widow who lived with her cats. On the way to church, she witnessed a car hitting a cat. When Jane went to help the creature, it got up and walked away. When Jane arrived at church, she realized that her touch had healed the cut on her friend’s hand. This began the journey of her “gift” of being able to cure and heal. Many doubted this ability, but the testimonies of the healed were soon too numerous to refute. Lines of people began forming outside of Jane’s home to receive healing.
This type of power attracted many who thirsted for control. It didn’t take long for the mafia to appear. The US government was not far behind. How would Jane handle these heavy-handed groups that wanted to take control of her gift? Who could imagine someone suing Jane because they did not to be healed? Managing her talent turned out to be more complicated than Jane had ever imagined. All she wanted to do was to help people and use her gift wisely. Would she be able to do so?
I enjoyed the skillful development of the main character in this other fiction novel. In Sister Jane, Irmgarde Brown began by highlighting Jane’s life as a widow. She lived with her parakeets and her cats, tried to delay the day when she would have to go to a nursing home, and conversed with her deceased husband. She also had a spectacular sense of humor that had me laughing out loud on more than one occasion. This strong emphasis on Jane’s joys and sorrows helps readers empathize with her during the remaining events in her life as she discovered and began using her gift.
The chapters alternated between the perspective of three characters: Jane, Nick, and Twomey. Each chapter title identified the person narrating the chapter and the timeline. This writing style was fascinating as each character narrated their perspective of the different events affecting their life and the life of the people who came to Jane for healing. Jane wanted to heal people. Nick, her ambitious son-in-law, wanted to make money from Jane’s healing ability. His active imagination saw dollar signs, as Jane’s fame would eventually fill stadiums with people begging to be touched by her healing hands. Twomey, a frustrated journalist, searched for a story to reclaim the fame and respect he had lost through unprofessional behavior and poor decisions. The triple perspective enhanced the story and highlighted the author’s ability to interpret each situation from multiple angles.
The timeline of the book follows the Christian season of Lent. The story commences on Ash Wednesday and concludes with Holy Week. Jane prays over the people who come to her for healing. The appearance of the resurrected cat seemed to indicate the genesis of Jane’s healing ability. The cat manifested the magical abilities to read people and situations and permitted Jane to have the power to heal. The reader can decide if Jane’s abilities were mystical or magical.
There were some minor grammar issues, such as missing commas and a few missing periods but no misspelled words. I did notice the frequent use of mild profanity, and even Jane bit her tongue at times! The text did not contain any erotic scenes.
I rate this book three out of four stars. The number of grammar errors obligated me to lower the score. This other fiction novel offers excellent character development, intriguing dialogues, and an unexpected and fascinating turn of events. This book would appeal to readers looking for themes of mystery, suspense, and the supernatural. Jane talks about her faith, but a wide range of readers could immerse themselves in her amazing adventure. I would immensely enjoy a sequel to Jane’s story!
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