My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is not like the series Twilight by Stephenie Meyer. Twilight by Peter James was published in ’91 and is far darker and thrives on the fluid ability to write in flashbacks that draw up to the present. I’ll explain later. For now here’s the backdrop.
Sally Donaldson has just been buried. She was twenty three and pregnant, just got married. However some people, including the vicar or grave attendant,would hear scratching noises from the young woman’s coffin. Was Sally Donaldson buried alive?
Kate Hemingway, a reporter, tries to find the truth after stumbling upon the story and when she is there during the exhumation, what she finds is horrific and beyond all her nightmares. In the midst of this terrifying ordeal, an anesthetist is hung up on life after death and he is ruthless in finding out the truth of what happens when people die.
So this brings us to the story’s set up in general. The book begins with Sally Donaldson being buried and that in itself is quite hard to deal with. Even in fiction. For she was newly wed and pregnant. Then we are thrust into the 60’s with Harvey Swire and his dark depression over his dead mother and then he eventually gets into an accident, causing his soul or what he calls “consciousness” to float up from his body and this pushes him further on edge in his medical studies. What he does will probably shock you.
Each chapter focused on either Kate or Harvey, however the story converges together, making for a quick paced read; and although you can piece together who is behind the mysterious death immediately, I doubt that’s the point of the book. Peter James wanted us to see inside what we all want to know: Can we see through the glass darkly? Is it possible to reach a frontier in death and then come back to our bodies? Why is it that when some die and cross that frointier of the afterlife, they are told to “Go back, you’re not ready.”
The book was certainly a book to think about long after.
If you like: Robin Cook’s medical thrillers and the question of life after death then, you’ll love this book.
Author: Peter James
Published: St. Martin’s Press(1991)