2014-01-29

Messages, by John Michael Hileman

FREE BOOK: Messages: Book 1 in the David Chance Series (Suspense, Mystery, Thriller)

http://amzn.to/1b8Yhf3 [Kindle version is free. Paper versions from $10]
http://bit.ly/FreeKindleReaders [Free Kindle reader, y’all!]

David Chance can see messages in the sea of words around him, messages that warn him of future events.

Words are everywhere-- on labels, magazines, sign posts, t-shirts-- everywhere. And as much as David Chance would like to hide from them, he can't. Words keep leaping off objects around him, forming messages in his mind. But how is this possible? Has his brain suddenly taken an evolutionary leap forward, or are the mysterious messages proof of divine intervention?

Driven to answer a question he'd long ago abandoned, and stalked by the killer he's trying to stop, David risks everything to follow the messages to a dirty bomb set to go off in the heart of Boston. But can he trust the author of the messages to protect him from a terrorist who seems to know his every move.


From a 5-star review: “John Michael Hileman's latest novel will not disappoint his fans--and is sure to increase his fan base exponentially, as the buzz spreads about this talented Maine writer's second work. The story line leaps to a quick start from the very first sentence and doesn't slow its pace once.

Hileman has the gift of creating intricate, tightly woven subplots for a cast of characters who come to life with each paragraph. Protagonist David Chance is a likeable everyman. There is nothing special about him, nothing to set him apart from people we encounter every day...except for the sudden onset of an inexplicable ability--a super power of sorts--his ability to foresee the future through randomly strung-together words that form messages only he sees.

Stir into the mix the fact that Chance is a devoted family man with a typically complicated, somewhat dysfunctional family dynamic , and you have a character line up ready-made to provide richness and depth under Hileman's skilled pen.

David struggles to understand the messages he receives. How is this happening? What exactly is happening? Is he simply and unabashedly crazy, or is there a rational explanation for what is occurring?

As the plot twists and turns, the reader develops a bond with David, his family, and friends, and tries to second guess the outcome. Messages has all the hallmarks of a true political suspense bestseller. There is just the right degree of suspense, mixed in with a few hints to encourage the reader to "solve" the mystery.

Hileman is unapologetic in the use of faith-based dialogue to move the plot forward. At the same time, his inclusion of a faith message subplot enriches the novel with interesting questions many of us wrestle to answer. Messages can hold its own against the work of David Baldacci, John Grisham and other skilled storytellers. Hileman makes the list of my top 100 favorite authors with this new release.