Jack’s a compelling character, and his vividly described psychic sight is the underlying current powering much of the narrative. He stumbles onto Cassidy’s abduction through his clairvoyance, in the process discovering Gerald is still alive–despite Jack believing he was dead after his team previously prevented Gerald from kidnapping his own daughter, Joanna, who happens to attend Havenhart. Jack’s psychic Connection with Cassidy is his strongest yet, leading him to risk everything for her recovery. Merrill’s focus on her characters’ paranormal abilities creates a unique attachment between them as well as glimpses of their inner workings, and Jack’s narrative is both authentic and insightful—particularly when he delves into his past psychic experience with his father’s death by suicide.
Merrill’s view and development of The Maker’s Plan Community is disturbingly real and reminiscent of famous cults in history. The community resides in the vast and almost undetectable swamplands of the Florida Everglades, which lends credibility to the isolation and indoctrination of its members. An ever-present element of suspense reinforces the story’s rapid pace, and Merrill delivers a riveting conclusion that will entice readers with the possibility of future installments.
Takeaway: A former Army Ranger with intense psychic abilities relies sets out to rescue a woman abducted by a religious cult.
Great for fans of: Gregg Olsen’s The Hive, Matt Miksa’s Don’t Get Close.
Design and typography: A
Marketing copy: A