Monday, February 24, 2014

REVIEW: Tale of the Penitent Thief by Don Willis

Title: The Tale of the Penitent Thief

Author: Don Willis
Series: none
Publisher: WestBow Press
Published Date: April 25, 2013
ISBN: 9781449791940
Buy It Link: Amazon
Genre: religious fiction
Rating: 2 stars

Synopsis: Young Dismas and his brother Jotham are blissfully unaware of the lifelong journey that awaits them soon after their encounter with the young girl, Mary, her husband, Joseph, and their baby, Jesus. Their lives will soon take a very cruel turn that leads through hurt, hardship, betrayal, and murder.

Along the way, they make unlikely alliances with Tiran and Gestas, two known criminals with a penchant for theft and murder. It is a path that will ultimately lead them all to intersect with their brutal destinies.

Throughout their journey, their lives will intersect with some of the most famous gures of the Bible, and they will learn about love, faith, and the most powerful weapon against sin... forgiveness.

Review: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review from BookLook Bloggers.
The story behind this book intrigued me, to the point where I couldn't wait to start it. You know one of those books that you must absolutely read RIGHT NOW? This was it. I started reading excitedly, and it all went downhill from there.
The author falls into the trap of telling and not showing with his words.I can't tell you what a single character looked like. Mary was described as beautiful, the most beautiful woman that one of the main characters, Dismas, had ever seen. What did she look like? What color was her hair, was it long, short? How did she wear it? What color were her eyes, her skin? What was she wearing?Tiran looked mean. How does someone look mean? Did he have any hair, any facial hair? What did he wear? Did he smell? Gestas...he just plain confused me with his age. Other than the same problem with no true description as all the characters had, the first encounter with him we have, he smacks Dismas upside the head. I can see an older boy doing that, or a kid the same age, but later in the book, he's described as closer to the younger brother's age, than Dismas' (the two brothers have a 5-6 year age difference). I can tell you however that Jesus had the most piercing set of blue eyes ever, what he looked like besides that, still have no idea.
Now the storyline....the storyline was so intriguing! It had so much potential! The author just took way too many fictional liberties with it though. It's the difference between Philippa Gregory's writing and this author's writing. Research, research, and more research. Make me feel like I'm in Jerusalem at that time. Make me see it, feel it, make me be in it. And then write the story. We don't know what the story is behind those two thieves, so there is so much potential! The writing was just so flat, and too contrived.

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