Official Review: When a conscience knocks

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Tomah
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Official Review: When a conscience knocks

Post by Tomah »

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "When a conscience knocks" by James G. Skinner.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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A woman walks into a church with jumbled thoughts and confusing, overlapping emotions tormenting her. The only thing she is sure about is the unbearable guilt she feels. The woman, Jennifer Robertson, decides to tell her story from the start in hopes of forgiveness. Jenny is a UK citizen who headed for Iran to work as a teacher, eventually meeting and marrying Juan Miguel, a secretary of the Spanish Embassy. She learned there was more to her husband's work, however, as the couple found themselves witnessing major historical events across the world from up close. Their marriage was further challenged when Juan Miguel started showing symptoms of Alzheimer’s later in life.

James G. Skinner's When a conscience knocks feels almost like two different novels in the same book. The first portion focuses on international history and politics as the story intertwines with historical events from the 1970s to the early 2000s: the Iranian Revolution, the Falklands War, the dissolution of the Soviet Union, etc. We view these events from the perspective of civilians and those working behind the scenes collecting and analyzing information. The author has clearly done his research, embedding even small details, such as state leaders' travel schedules, into the plot. History buffs will not be disappointed.

The second portion of the book is far more character-driven, emphasizing psychological exploration. Its main theme is how an illness affects both the patient and, particularly, the caregivers. Without coming across as judgmental, the story raises complex ethical dilemmas and points out the emotional burden carried by family members and friends in these situations.

Readers who dislike stream-of-consciousness in literature might be put off by the novel's style, which makes heavy use of sentence fragments and conversational language ("I arrived early. See if I could talk to the priest before mass. Found him"). This gives the narrative a personal tone and provides an intimate look at the main character's mental and emotional state. For example, the narration in the first chapter is filled with digressions and loosely connected ideas, reflecting Jenny's inner turmoil.

When a conscience knocks offers a unique blend of themes that might not please everyone. Readers interested in drama and character exploration could find the first part boring, while readers who enjoy international politics face the risk of being disappointed by the second part of the story. Those willing to give both sides of the novel a chance, however, will experience a great literary journey across historical events and deep aspects of the human condition. I rate the book 3 out of 4 stars, detracting one point for the unfortunate number of grammatical and typographical errors. When a conscience knocks is meant for a mature audience, featuring profanities and mild sex scenes.

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When a conscience knocks
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Patrick Maina1
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Post by Patrick Maina1 »

A blend of History, international politics and art.Graet review.I should read this.

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Elvis Best
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Post by Elvis Best »

This historical novel sounds rather interesting. Thanks for the insightful review. Good job!
"People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within." -Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

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Tomah
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Post by Tomah »

Elvis Best wrote:
07 Aug 2020, 17:03
This historical novel sounds rather interesting. Thanks for the insightful review. Good job!
Patrick Maina1 wrote:
07 Aug 2020, 12:58
A blend of History, international politics and art.Graet review.I should read this.
Thanks for the comments!

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Post by Letty Piet »

Definitely not for me😅but the book sounds interesting. I think I would enjoy it if it was a movie though. Thanks for the lucid review.

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Post by jardenjarden »

This sounds like an enticing read. I like that the narration style is so personal and intimate, I feel like that would definitely aid to the reader's general understanding of the character's thought processing. Your review made this book sound like it is worth reading, I'll definitely have to add it to my list. Thanks for the great review!

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Kanda_theGreat
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Post by Kanda_theGreat »

I am more attracted to the psychological discourse. Thank you for your descritive review.

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Post by Munachimso_Nwaogazie »

The fact that this book appears to be one full of valuable information and that reflects the reality of individuals who have a sick family interests me. This is a nice review!

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Post by Honest-reviewer »

The book seems interesting with historical and psychological elements in it. Thanks for your brilliant review.

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Post by Vic Chimezie »

I would love to read this book! What an engaging and insightful review from you. I enjoyed reading it. Thanks for the recommendation.

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Post by Chickenwings00 »

This book talks about a woman Who walks into a church with jumbled thoughts and confusing, overlapping emotions tormenting her. The review says it all. Good job.

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Post by Miks_solon »

Thanks for an insightful review! I think I'm going to read this.
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Post by Ellylion »

How pity that such an amazing book has so many errors. The book touches on many important themes, and I would definitely give it a try! :) Thank you for a great review!

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Ashley-Osuna
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Post by Ashley-Osuna »

I love all the elements that you mentioned: politics, history and character exploration. This seems very interesting to me, so I will definitely check it out. Thank you so much for the recommendation, hopefully another round of editing can fix the typos.

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Tomah
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Post by Tomah »

jardenjarden wrote:
08 Aug 2020, 00:10
This sounds like an enticing read. I like that the narration style is so personal and intimate, I feel like that would definitely aid to the reader's general understanding of the character's thought processing. Your review made this book sound like it is worth reading, I'll definitely have to add it to my list. Thanks for the great review!
Kanda_theGreat wrote:
08 Aug 2020, 01:04
I am more attracted to the psychological discourse. Thank you for your descritive review.
Munachimso_Nwaogazie wrote:
08 Aug 2020, 01:56
The fact that this book appears to be one full of valuable information and that reflects the reality of individuals who have a sick family interests me. This is a nice review!
Honest-reviewer wrote:
08 Aug 2020, 04:40
The book seems interesting with historical and psychological elements in it. Thanks for your brilliant review.
Vic Chimezie wrote:
08 Aug 2020, 08:14
I would love to read this book! What an engaging and insightful review from you. I enjoyed reading it. Thanks for the recommendation.
Chickenwings00 wrote:
08 Aug 2020, 18:59
This book talks about a woman Who walks into a church with jumbled thoughts and confusing, overlapping emotions tormenting her. The review says it all. Good job.
Miks_solon wrote:
09 Aug 2020, 01:28
Thanks for an insightful review! I think I'm going to read this.
Ellylion wrote:
09 Aug 2020, 08:24
How pity that such an amazing book has so many errors. The book touches on many important themes, and I would definitely give it a try! :) Thank you for a great review!
Ashley-Osuna wrote:
09 Aug 2020, 20:41
I love all the elements that you mentioned: politics, history and character exploration. This seems very interesting to me, so I will definitely check it out. Thank you so much for the recommendation, hopefully another round of editing can fix the typos.
Letty Piet wrote:
07 Aug 2020, 20:57
Definitely not for me😅but the book sounds interesting. I think I would enjoy it if it was a movie though. Thanks for the lucid review.
Thanks for the comments!

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