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Posts Tagged ‘The Knowledge of the Holy’


This is a collection which includes Deadline, Dominion, and Deception. OllieChandlerCollection

Deadline:

Doc, Finney, and Jake. The three amigos. Three peas in a pod. Lifelong friends. Survived Nam together, more or less. Stood up at each other’s weddings. Standing Sunday afternoon football date.

And now there was one, after that fateful Sunday afternoon pizza run. Jake was lucky to have gotten out of the accident alive.

As he tries to go back to his normal routine as a columnist for the Portland Tribune, those four little words change everything………………… “It wasn’t an accident.”

Jake was used to getting mail, but nothing like this. He couldn’t let it go. He had to follow the note. He had to get ahold of his friend, Ollie Chandler.

Dominion:

Clarence Abernathy had gotten acquainted with Detective Ollie Chandler when his friend and fellow Tribune columnist, Jake Woods, worked with Ollie to solve the murders of his two best friends. Jake’s world was shaken to the core when his two best friends died in an accident that should have claimed him, too.

Clarence was a driving force in Jake getting reacquainted with God, thanks to the two men being thrown together on a ‘diversity panel’ for the paper.

When his sister and niece get shot and killed by suspected gang activity, Clarence knows he needs Ollie’s help. Can he find justice for his sister and niece without losing his soul in the process?

Deception:

Ollie is losing his mind. This last murder doesn’t add up. Come to think of it, the last two murders he and his partner investigated seemed too ‘clean;’ too neatly tied up. The puzzle pieces fit together too perfectly.

This latest homicide, though? This one has him in fits. It also has his gum wrapper with his fingerprints- and his rope around the dead man’s neck- at the crime scene. And it’s not just Ollie getting framed.

So many things don’t add up that Ollie can only come to one conclusion: someone in the Homicide department is a killer.

Can Ollie bring the killer to justice before another attempt on his life is successful? If he can’t, where will he go when he dies? Can he change his thinking and finally find faith in God so he can go to heaven when his time is up?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The plots are pretty good. The books would have been good if they had just stuck to the actual plot.

I should have known something was afoot when the beginning acknowledgements gave credit to A.W. Tozer.

Tozer is not easy reading. Actually, his books are some of the most complex I’ve ever read, and while the writing is sound, it’s absolutely not pleasure reading. For me, it’s pretty laborious. Unless I do it in small doses, it puts me to sleep; sending my mind into never-never land. Tozer is one of those authors that even when you are reading out loud, it won’t might not make sense the first or second or third time.

The first two books are written totally in that vein. And I didn’t enjoy them. At. All.

Maybe it’s because I’m already on board and the “case” for God doesn’t need to be made to me. I don’t know.

Add to this that the dead characters were expounding on heaven and hell (although much less hell was being presented) in greater proportion than actual main plot and I was getting frustrated. There were numerous times I actually said out loud, “If I had wanted to read Tozer, I would go back and read *him*!” {fully knowing that my copy of The Knowledge of the Holy is still packed away somewhere…….}

Combine this with the length of this title- no kidding, I had been reading for something like 3 days and I hadn’t even gotten through the first book!- and the fact that Ollie Chandler, whom the series was named after, wasn’t even a MAIN character and didn’t actually show up until something like half-way through the book, well, I was not looking forward to reading the other two titles.

True to form, I got into the second book and felt like it was never going to end, but because I was reviewing it, I needed to slog through it.

Again, Ollie was not a main character, and didn’t really have a whole lot to do with any part of the book. This one focused entirely on race- the fact that Clarence was black and what it’s like to be black in America. We went on a Bible tour via the deceased sister and her angel guide; through the Old Testament to see how the Ethiopians were faithful Christians, which absolutely didn’t translate to the white man’s perception of blacks during slavery.

We learned all about gang violence between the Cripps and the Bloods; the method to the tagging, etc etc.

Strangely, while in the first book Finney was praying for his family and for Jake, there was only a single incidence of Dani praying for Clarence; and she didn’t break away and pray for her own son when he took up arms and shot someone during gang initiation. It felt like the author was too focused in on debunking the perceived myth that only white people were in the Bible to even have continuity in his writing.

In my opinion, this book was entirely too heavy on the race theme and trying to impress that the whites should make restitution for slavery than it was sticking to the plot. Or maybe the rabbit trails were the plot. Either way, while it was informative, it wasn’t an enjoyable read, nor one that made much sense as it applies to actual plot.

I was really relieved to finally get to the last book in the collection, although I was seriously dreading it. If I hadn’t been reviewing these titles, I would probably have stopped in the second book.

Surprisingly, I really liked the last book. This should not be a huge surprise, because Ollie was the main character and was written from his perspective. And, it was funny. I mean, it was laugh-out-loud funny in numerous parts, which was not only refreshing, but a much-welcomed reprieve from the heavy tone of the other two titles.

The crux of this book was Ollie weeding through the evidence of the final murder to not only exonerate himself as a suspect and bring the real killer to justice, but also to save his soul.

Jake made an appearance, since he was a long-time good friend of Ollie’s. Clarence was there, too. Apparently, the newspaper made a deal with the police department to have one of their reporters shadow a murder investigation, right from the start. This included having unprecedented access for their own photographer.

I don’t think I need to say how unrealistic I think this is; you know, compromising a crime scene with civilians and all. And, despite the fact that Clarence was supposed to be in Ollie’s pocket for every single everything having to do with the case, there were several times Ollie could have used Clarence, but Clarence was mysteriously absent.

I really can’t give the first two books anything but 2, but the last book I can say I’d give a 5 to. It was funny; not overly preachy, and the continuity was significantly better. Overall, the collection gets a 3. I would probably give the author another chance should he write another Ollie book, but wouldn’t hesitate to put it down if it goes the route of the fist two titles.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

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