I'm always on the hunt for authors Brian will enjoy, but he reads with a critical eye. Not critical in a mean way. Critical in the sense that he spots inconsistent plots, flat characters, and overdone description.
He usually finishes the books he starts, but when I ask him, "How'd you like it?" it's rare for me to get a rave review. He's particularly tough on the author when the storyline becomes too far-fetched for his tastes.
(In the interest of full disclosure, it should be noted that I have rarely run across a storyline too far-fetched for my tastes. Just saying.)
So when I read Rooms by Jim Rubart a few months ago, I couldn't decide whether or not to pass it along to Brian. Because there's this little issue of an "out there" storyline . . .
It's hard to write a review of Rooms without giving away the whole thing. I make a concerted effort not to include spoilers in my reviews because half the fun of reading a book is the incremental discovery that comes as the author weaves details into drama.
But you can pick up this much from the back cover . . . Micah is a young software executive who seems to have everything. Except his faith, which he set aside as he pursued his career. All that changes when he discovers a house has been constructed for him in Cannon Beach, a place full of bitter memories and far removed from his fast-paced lifestyle.
Micah intends to enlist the services of a real estate agent at once, but the mansion on Cannon Beach is no ordinary mansion. It feels like home, like it was designed just for him.
And then new rooms appear. Some rooms are too frightening to enter. Some too pleasurable to leave.
What follows is the journey into a heart of man. And the extraordinary measures God takes to draw us back to Him.
Rooms falls into the "speculative fiction" genre. In other words, it's not bound to reality. Think It's a Wonderful Life meets The Shack. Weird things happen. But if you're willing to go along for the ride, you'll find your own rooms that require deep thoughts and long searches of the soul.
I liked it.
So did Brian.
Let me know if you do, too!