FROM DEATH REBORN – by Kenneth W. Cain
Publisher: Silver Shamrock Publishing
Available: April 2021
Verdict: 4.25 out of 5.0
Overview: (Courtesy of Goodreads listing) In the spaces between Heaven and Hell there is the un-life, a place where all beings are but pieces on a chessboard. Influenced by greed and power and love, each individual must face their own challenges and exert their free will as they see fit. No one, not even God or the Devil, can do anything but try to curb what goes on there. Follow Nathan and Clay as they battle their way through several of the many realms of Hell, on a collision course with the unknown. There, in the un-life, everything will change. Everyone one will change. And a new being will be born. But will it be for the best, or will evil prevail?
The Good: There’s a myriad of themes and genres playing side by side throughout this novel, which allows the story to remain inventive and surprising. The dynamic and twist to Nathan and Clyde’s relationship is one quickly guessed, but intriguing nevertheless. Their back-and-forth is strongest in the first third of the novel, which may have been my favorite stretch. The mix of crime up front reeled me in with ease, while the mysterious realm travel took me to another plane (pun intended). The fantasy elements get really strong half way through, but all the time the story remains dark and contemplative.
The Bad: The finale did nothing for me, unfortunately. I also didn’t care for the use of Darrius, Galen, and the rest of that group that follows Clyde. Hearing a bit of their backstories only hindered the pacing of things, rather than make me care about their existence.
The Takeaway: From Death Reborn is an exciting and interesting story that traverses many levels, much like its characters. Cain has a wonderfully dark imagination that begs to be tapped for more. It’s not often you think, I’d like to visit Hell some more!
> File Under: genre fluid … horror … dark fantasy … Heaven vs Hell … realms of Hell … life after death
> Also Read: A Season in Hell … Embers: A Collection of Dark Fiction
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> Aiden’s scoring system – (5) Perfection (4) Loved it (3) Enjoyed it (2) Disliked it (1) Hard pass / Aiden generally will not write a review for anything that scores lower than a (3) in his mind / DNF means “Did Not Finish” – this could be because of the writing, scheduling conflicts, lack of interest, or content; it does not necessarily mean the book was terrible