Review of Sanctuary

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Brendan Donaghy
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Review of Sanctuary

Post by Brendan Donaghy »

[Following is an official review of "Sanctuary" by Paul W Ashlin.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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In Sanctuary, by Paul Ashlin, the coach of the high-school football team in Big Springs, Texas has a lot on his mind. Tom Thompson and Kathy, his wife, have not been getting on since they moved to the small town from Ohio. She doesn’t like Big Springs, doesn’t like how the people there treat football like a religion. The final straw for Kathy comes when the team loses an important game. Tom and Kathy arrive home from the game to find a mob attacking their house. Shortly after this, Kathy packs her things and leaves town with the couple’s two kids.

Tom thinks his life has been turned upside down, but that’s just the start of his troubles. The real drama starts when he attends a coin-toss event to decide if his team can proceed to a play-off match. A cataclysmic event at the coin-toss triggers a ripple effect, and Tom finds himself at the center of a drama he can’t control and doesn’t fully understand. He meets a woman with whom he shares an inexplicable, electric attraction. Is she friend or foe? Caught up in a media storm, Tom tries to work out what is going on. Does he have special powers? Has he been given a mission? Above all, who can he trust, and where can he find sanctuary?

This is an enjoyable novel that is driven by its fast action and snappy, authentic dialogue. The author doesn’t intrude with lengthy descriptive passages or information dumps. Instead, he allows the words and deeds of his characters to carry the reader along. This makes for a pacey story that twists and turns from start to finish. I also liked how the author handles the subplots, shifting seamlessly from one to another in a way that keeps the reader’s attention from waning. The paranormal element of the narrative is also handled with skill. It’s certainly a feature of the story, but it is hinted at rather than made explicit. There is much more of it to be explored and developed in subsequent books. I’m assuming that there will be other books to follow, as the author finishes this one with the words ‘To be continued…’. Hopefully, this is the first of a series.

I found the minor errors in the book frustrating, even if they didn’t spoil my overall enjoyment of the story. It’s a common occurrence in books published by independent authors, both fiction and non-fiction, that a work of some merit is marred by small mistakes that could have been weeded out with proper, professional editing.

I am awarding this book three out of four stars. I am deducting one star on account of the errors mentioned above. The book may have been professionally edited, but another round of proofreading would have added a shine to it. I recommend it to people who enjoy fast-paced thrillers laced with a hint of the supernatural. The book is for adults; there is strong language from the beginning, along with some mild eroticism. In summary, this is a good read, and I look forward to the next in the series.

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Post by Ghuddie »

Tom's story is quite intriguing. It'll be interesting to know how his relationship with the new woman turns out. Great review.
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Nwadinso Okoro
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Post by Nwadinso Okoro »

It is quite hard to find trust in a chaotic space. Tom's issue is quite delicate and he doesn't have his wife or anyone to encourage. I would love to read the book to know how the story ended. Thanks for your review.
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Post by Emeka Nwankwoala »

I learnt that people treated other people well who belong to their religion. That made the team to loss match because among them brought discouragement to out siders. A team does not stands on tribalism. Thanks
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Post by Adaeze Joan »

When I first saw the book title, my first guess was that it was a self help book, but after reading your well written review,I have been convinced otherwise. What is really Tom's mission? Is that why he was given superpowers? Well, I would just have to read the book to find out.
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Post by Raymond N »

Tom definitely has it coming for him. Great review.
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Post by Apple 7 »

Finding a form of solace during trying times especially in relationships cannot be predicted.....a very nice review
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Post by Ariella dazzle »

Families are supposed to support us in times of crisis, but I guess Tom's wife doesn't think that way. I love your review
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Post by Wasila A »

I'm not very much thrilled with fiction books but your explicit review makes me want to read the book. I will definitely read it sometime.
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Post by Asiaa Szn »

Tom's wife didn't do a good job of playing the role of a wife which is to support the husband. This is a good review though
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Post by Nomcebo_0619 »

Some partners aren't in this marriage thing genuinely. Tom's wife is the proof of that, excellent review by the way.
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Post by Marzifor »

I hope Tom has special powers.I am looking forward to reading this book.
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Post by Regard003 »

The wife didn't even wait to if things could get better. Id like to see how Tom handled the mess. A very captivating review
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Post by Reynaldo Albano »

Tom, Kathy and Thier two kids shared events of transfering from Ohio to Thier new domicile they cannot accept.
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Post by Charlize Venter »

A thorough and authentic review. It seems a fast-pace story. I enjoy the idea that there aren't 'factual dumps', but rather an incorporation of facts that seem to seep into the story as opposed to being thrown on the reader.
I was worried that his wife leaving would spoil the story, but I enjoyed how you picked up the pace of the review with the intrigue and mystery that is to follow; I almost forgot about his domestic troubles!

Well written, and I look forward to reading the book some day.
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