Reviewer Donna Manganaris
The bible says, "The gods visit the sins of the fathers upon the children." If this is true, who'll pay for the historical atrocities mankind has inflicted on its weaker members over the millennium? "Faces of Doom", by S.A. Gorden, is a page-turning paranormal tale filled with historical references meticulously woven into a skillfully constructed and, at times, beautifully described story.
Despite the lack of purple prose, Mr. Gorden's tale spirits us into the life of Peter Hill, an ordinary man struggling with personal tragedies and psychological dilemmas, with total conviction and reality. The obligatory violence and sex scenes, while necessary to the plot, are not overdone nor overly graphic when compared to some other modern published novels, keeping to Gorden's simplistic and pleasurable style.
While I did find myself wanting Mr. Gorden to fill in more of the minor characters' backgrounds to satisfy my sense of curiosity, I feel "Faces of Doom" is a definite keeper. It's a quick read that'll have you asking more questions than those the story posed on its own.
GWN Reviewer Cindy Lynn Speer
Peter Hill has always felt the lure of stone, but he's pushed it aside, lived his life. When his wife and daughter are taken away from him by a terrible car accident, the lure is back. After various tangles with hospitals and hypocritical church members, he finds himself free, traveling up to a place he finds himself strongly attracted to. There he finds a stone with runes carved on it ... a stone that brings back memories of a past long ago, when he sailed the seas as a shipwright and loved a woman named Heidi. Tragedy parted them, but now, in the present, fate seems to have brought her back to him, in the body of a young woman named Faith, who also has dreams of the past. Soon, they discover that there was more than one stone, and soon find themselves on an adventure to unlock the secrets of their past lives, and the stones that seem to bring it all back.
One of the first things that struck me was the reality of the narrator's voice. The things he relates at first are very shocking ... the hospital and the community, instead of pulling together and helping him in his hour of need, turn on him when he finally agrees to take his wife off life support. Everyone is being encouraged to see him as a baby killer, for his wife was carrying a child, and so he soon finds himself jobless, as well as friendless. He is ripe for a new beginning. At other times his voice is very picturesque, painting images that are hauntingly evocative. Evocative serves a dual purpose ... by definition, evocative recalls the past, and soon, Peter will be doing plenty of that.
The amount of historical research that has gone into this story is also impressive ... many different times come to life. The vivid dreams often paint tragic portraits, as well as giving us a neat view ... because we see several different times. We also feel his themes keenly ... so many terrible things happen, things that seem to cry out for justice.
An incredibly well written, suspenseful book, it is filled with history as well as mystery, magic and, strangely enough, hope.