A paranormal romance? Are you crazy? Was my first reaction when I opened Jen Minkman’s novel, The Shadow of Time.
There in the introduction was one line that bowled me over…
All Hannah longs for is a nice and quiet vacation after her first year of teaching French at a high school. She joins her brother Ben for the summer in their mom’s log cabin in Arizona. There, she meets Josh again, Ben’s childhood friend from the Navajo reservation. The little boy from the rez has grown up fast, and Hannah can’t help but feeling more for him than just friendship.
But fate apparently has something else in store for her. And it’s not peace and quiet. Night after night, Hannah is plagued by strange nightmares about the past of Navajo Nation and terrifying shadows chasing her. They seem to come closer – and why is Josh always present in her dreams?
Sometimes, the past has a way of catching up with you.
I started the book in earnest. The novel takes you to Navajo Nation and back to the Indians who were original inhabitants of America. Hannah, a school teacher, comes to spend the summer with her younger brother Ben at their home in St. Ports. There she meets Josh, Ben’s best friend and starts falling in love with Josh. There is something about him which she cannot place. Neither can she explain the irresistible force Josh has.
As she discovers love, Hannah is plagued with nightmares and supernatural incidences. It almost feels as if she is cursed. And amidst that, her relationship with Josh takes a tumble. Hannah is in absolute despair.
Till this point, I was already enthralled. Then came Jen’s master card.
Josh comes clean about having experienced his past life on a vision quest he took when he was 14 years old. Hannah realizes that their bond stretches far beyond this life.
But will their love be able to destroy demons from the past? Will they ever be able to live a normal life? Would they end up together in their next life? And what about those terrifying nightmares which look like parts of a Civil War Movie?
So many questions and what a fitting end. The highlight of this novel is definitely when Josh takes Hannah and indeed the reader on a beautiful journey across the rich heritage and history of Navajos in America and how they adapted to a cultural and territorial invasion from the ‘palefaces’ who they fought with. It was such a marvelous insight into Navajo beliefs. The Navajo people revere elements of the earth and spend their life amidst divinity and gratitude. It almost made me want to live that way, far away from the stresses of the corporate life.
Jen has a very easy way of writing and yet the impact she creates with those words is tremendous. I believe her novel would make a fine film if someone wishes to someday!! The book doesn’t fail to keep you entertained and I couldn’t put it down for even a moment.
A few of my favourite lines from the Novel:
She saw the light in his eyes was gentle and unafraid. He did no longer want to shut her out. “I was told to make peace, and to find it for myself.”
Hannah stared at him in awe. “That’s so beautiful,” she whispered.
I sing a traditional song for my brother, whose face gradually draws pale. The light in his eyes is fading and when finally reinforcements arrive from behind, he has practically lost consciousness. His spirit is already somewhere else, in a more beautiful and peaceful place.
This was amazing. The universe wasn’t as unfair and senseless as it sometimes seemed. Everything was connected. Ties between people never really disappeared. She was a part of something bigger that she would never be able to fully comprehend, and didn’t necessarily need to comprehend in order to trust in it.
All in All, The Shadow of Time is an irresistible book! You just can’t put it down
My rating: 4/5 indeed
I believe you should check Jen’s website out, http://www.jenminkman.blogspot.in and go for the book right away 🙂 🙂