STORM’S WAKE by J L Barnett-A Review

STORM’S WAKE by JL Barnett

REMINDER–INTERVIEW & GIVEAWAY with the author:  J L Barnett

Friday March 23, 2012

Storm’s Wake is the premiere book in JL Barnett’s new series-The Chronicles of Jake. JL Barnett is a first time author, with Storm’s Wake released in December 2011 and in ebook for Kindle in January 2012. With a mix of both Fantasy and Science fiction, JL introduces us to Jake Storm, a mystery man who awakens from a 6-year coma with no knowledge of what has happened or who he is. The timeline is the mid 21st century.

Jake Storm is in pain. With no recollection of who, what, where when or why, Jake slowly awakens from a 6 year coma, to a changed world. Hospital personnel tell him about the warehouse explosion that nearly cost him his life-he doesn’t remember. But something isn’t right. He remembers the scent of vanilla, and a woman with a Russian accent-was he dreaming or is she real? And why is everyone looking at him? The faces aren’t familiar, but the eyes. He has seen those eyes before. With only the a few hundred dollars and a couple of contact numbers, Jake is sent into the world, alone and wondering what has become of his life.

Jake meets Charlie, a friendly cab driver, who is more than willing to take Jake wherever he wants to go. And Tessa- a beautiful but mysterious woman they meet in California, who claims to have known Jake in his prior life. What are their connections to his past? But, when Tessa attacks Jake, he knows that not all is what is seems. And the dreams- Are they memories or dreams? Are they glimpses into the future or visions through the eyes of someone else?

So many questions that need to be answered, lead Jake on an adventure across the globe. When Tessa takes Jake to the home he left behind, before the ‘accident’, memories begin to return. A picture of a happy couple, at his bedside-he remembers-Tracie, but where is Tracie? Why isn’t she with him? Who has Tracie and what is her connection to the warehouse ‘accident’ that nearly took his life? But along with these memories, there are indications that Jake is not a simple man. There is a power that flows through Jake, that he cannot deny- his speed and agility, along with his ability to telepathically connect with others, on a different plane of consciousness. And Tessa has been assigned to bring Jake to those who wish to see him terminated.

Remembering that he was searching for his familial roots, Jake stumbles upon a medallion-The Medallion of the Head Triumvirate- left to him by his biological parents-A medallion that enhances the powers building-up inside of Jake. But the family history has been written over hundreds of years, dating back to the witch trials of the 1600s, and Jake is not without his own powers and control. As a member of the Triumvirate Council, during the Salem Witch Trials, Jake’s father Mikael Storme was rumored to have had a lover, but their relationship was deemed forbidden, as they were both ‘powered ones’, and Jake is the result of that relationship. And now Jake is the target of those hoping to harness control over his powers, the medallion and to destroy the man that he is.

Blackouts, headaches and nausea seem to accompany Jake’s visions and dreams. As the memories return, so does the need to acquire as much information about his past as is possible. And with every dream comes a female voice- a voice that urges him, directs him and leads him along the path of discovery. The voice is familiar and caring, but also warns of the dangers he is facing. With Tessa and Charlie, Jake searches for answers, but when all 3 are hunted, Jake knows he must find a way to keep everyone alive. And his memories of Tracie come unbidden and more frequently as his powers increase. She has a connection to the men and the explosion that almost destroyed his world.

But a fantasy/sci-fi novel would not be complete without a demon or shape-shifter as well. Tessa, it seems, has some hidden powers of her own and aids Jake in his hunt to track down the people who are trying to take him in. When Tessa recounts a story of genetic experiments and a binding formula, somehow Jake knows that Tessa is a victim as well. Science fiction fans will relish the idea and the fantasy readers, will cherish the shifter- abilities of the Contessa Morgaine.

When the trail leads to Russia, Jake and Tessa must leave an injured Charlie behind. But a series of abductions involving young girls, a train ride through the forests of Russia and ‘hydro-copters’ on patrol, hunting both Tessa and Jake, their journey will be hampered by an injury, that will draw them closer together. When a mysterious healer, a shaman, aids in the recovery, Jake is surprised to learn that the man has the gift of inner sight-one that will allow Tessa to see the real Jake.

This first book in The Chronicles of Jake series, ends on a cliff-hanger. Culminating in the office of Dr. Johan Gustav-head of the bio-genetics lab, both Jake and Tessa learn about the history of what has occurred in the labs, the genetic testing and the many unexplained deaths and disappearances of those used for experimental purposes. And once again, Jake finds himself in the precarious position, of being trapped-and this time, it is not in a coma, but in the forgotten holding cells in the basement of Werder Castle.

Storm’s Wake is a wonderful first novel for JL Barnett. Mixing both fantasy and science-fiction, JL has touched both genres, without delving too deep into the realm of the paranormal. His hero, Jake Storm is as powerful as he is gentle-which is a very likeable combination. JL writes an interesting story, without the use of foul language, sex or graphic violence. The story is an easy read and the writing style is simple. And the cover model—The magnificent Francis J. Cura. Although, in the beginning, I had a hard time connecting with the hero, it is with conscious effort, JL explains, that my perception, was exactly what he had in mind, when he wrote Storm’s Wake. Book 2 in The Chronicles of Jake –Storm’s Rage—will be released in the fall of 2012.

I have no problem recommending Storm’s Wake.  I look forward to Storm’s Rage in the fall.

Click Here to Order from Amazon: STORM’S WAKE by J L Barnett

Click here for J L Barnett blog: Chronicles of Jake
reviewed by Sandy

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