2 out of 4 stars
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Jake Matthews is on his way to his girlfriend’s house when he is involved in an accident. He appears in the afterlife but can still hear his mom’s voice beside his hospital bed on Earth, which is an anomaly because the living and the dead shouldn’t be able to coincide with one another. Apart from the anomaly, it seems Jake has come to the afterlife before his time.
In the afterlife, Jake meets Archie, his afterlife mentor, who takes him on a journey to the land of the Polopies, God’s first creation, to obtain answers and fix the situation. It becomes apparent soon enough that Jake is not just a “regular teenager.” Who really is Jake? What is his fate in the afterlife? What does he have to do to fulfill his destiny? Would he succeed in his journey to fulfilling his destiny? Find out answers to the previous questions and more in the fiction novel called Eternal Heights by Jourdan Binger.
First, I was pleased with the short length of this book. I listened to the audio version and finished it in just over three hours. I like the way the author was able to develop Jake’s character through his dialogue with other characters. Also, the use of the third-person narrative style to support the dialogue was appreciated. Another thing I liked about the book was its excellent narration. The narrator gave each character a unique voice that made it easy to differentiate between the characters. Additionally, I didn’t notice any mistakes throughout the narration. I can say that the book is exceptionally edited.
As with many short books, this novel has a few negative aspects. First, I found some issues with the plot. There were several points in the story where the complete details of important events were left out. For example, the winner of Jake’s first chess match in the afterlife was not included in the story. Also, the way the relationship developed between Jake and Halsie, a princess in the afterlife, seemed rushed. I guess there were some events that the author left out that would have shed more light on why a girl that started on the wrong foot with a boy would fall in love with that same boy in a matter of hours. That story doesn’t check out to me.
Another thing I didn’t like about this book is that some of its scenes are quite extreme. For example, when Jake’s mom walks in on him and thinks he’s masturbating. The events that followed that scene saw Jake hung on a cross by some members of the church for something he didn’t even do, just because his mom didn’t want to hear him out. More so, what his mom does later is even more shocking, but I wouldn’t want to spoil the book for you. You can find that out when you read the publication.
Conclusively, several important questions are left unanswered. I hope there is a sequel; I want to know the outcome of his journey with Lucifer and the role Jesus played in his “expected” return. The book has several issues, and a rating of 2 out of 4 stars seems fair. The problems I discussed are enough to remove three stars, but I removed only two points not only because of the editing quality but also because I believe the book has some potentials.
I recommend this novel to people that are interested in fiction books that talk about the afterlife. The book can change the narrative for what Christians believe happens in the afterlife, so the text would be better suited to open-minded people and people with no religion. Readers should note that the book contains major profane words.
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