Sunday, July 29, 2012

Review: The Watchers

The Watchers
The Watchers by Jon Steele

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

GoodReads Synopsis: Meet Marc Rochat, a man-child who has devoted his life to being the bell ringer at the Gothic Lausanne Cathedral, one of the greatest architectural structures in the world. Eerie things have been going on in and around his church, including tremblings in the underground crypt and a variety of gruesomely murdered bodies showing up in nearby streets. Across the square from the cathedral lives Katherine Taylor, a beautiful young American woman who is making phenomenal money as one of the highest-priced call girls in Switzerland; she's a bit too introspective for her own good and, unfortunately, much too observant of her clients' peccadilloes. Rochat's and Taylor's lives collide with Jay Harper, a British private eye who has been sent to investigate the killings and other strange doings; alas, he has no memory of who hired him or precisely why he was chosen for the job. And now all the clues are pointing skyward, where fallen angels are said to haunt Lausanne.

My Thoughts: OK…I have to say that this was very slow starting. I can honestly say I fought to get through the first 1/3 of the book. But once we had all the back story out of the way, the real story really picked up. Also I can see where this could become a series…although I can’t find any indication that is to be the case. At almost 600 pages, this book can stand alone.

Jon Steele spent a lot of time building the world of the Cathedral…where most of the story takes place. I must admit after reading this book, seeing this cathedral is now on my bucket list. Equally fascinating was the references to the Book of Enoch which was part of the Dead Sea Scrolls and it is the framework for the angelic part of the storyline.

Mark Rochat is, in my opinion, the main character. He is one of those people who are often referred to as “slow”. He is aware of his limitations, “I’m not so good with words and numbers” he says, but more importantly, he is the type of person who only sees the good in others and fosters that goodness.

Jay Harper is our intrepid investigator. He seems a little slow on the uptake, like he’s operating in a fog, but nothing gets past him. He is our “hero”, though he would be the last one to think so. Eventually he is able to shake off the fog and figure out what is truly going on. I found him snarky and sarcastic…LOVED him!

Kathryn Taylor is our “Damsel in Distress” and she is a “Hot Mess” and then some. On the lam from the IRS, she is cashing in on her Playboy “fame” and working as a high-class call girl in Switzerland. And like most literary call girls, she finds herself in a mess of her own making and can’t quite figure out how to get out of it. Kathryn is a shallow twit who thinks of no one but herself. That is until Rochat and Harper enter to save the day.

If you can stick it out through the first 150 pages or so, I think the book is worth the time and effort. Most of the info from that beginning does come full circle and is necessary by the time you come to the ending. You just have to decide if the writing and storyline engages you enough to hang on. Personally if there is a possibility of angelic involvement, I will usually stick it out…and since Steele is a gifted writer and storyteller, I’m glad I hung in there.

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