Monday, October 28, 2013
BOOK REVIEW: "Worlds Apart" by Stephen B. Pearl
Growing up (and being kicked out of) the Roman Catholic Church was not fun. As a believer in God (both then and now) it was awful being told I wasn't worthy of being in God's House because of the way I dressed. Worlds Apart by Stephen B. Pearl, in a way brought me back to that time.
Alcina Woodgrove is a single mother with a wonderful little boy. On the outside, there is nothing to cause suspicion, but she is a Wiccan, the youngest member of a benevolent coven in England. Her husband, Carl, is a fanatical Christian, and wants to gain sole custody of their son, Tim, even though Alcina is a good mom.Alcina will fight tooth and nail to keep her son, but her husband's "people" like to play dirty...
Markus Tep is a wizard in an alternate universe Earth. This Earth is where magic thrives and is considered the norm for most humans. His work is his sole comfort. His parents are dead and his fiancee, Deb, left him to be a member of "alternative live": AKA a vampire. In his world, vampires are an accepted part of life, not fodder for popular media.
He is doing an illegal experiment involving "chaos magic", trying to find out if there really are other worlds than these. When he realizes be has only until Friday to either prove his theories correct or be arrested, he concocts a spell that will take him into another world...Alcina's world.
Markus and Alcina become allies and lovers: he promises to help keep her and her son safe and she vows to help him with his experiment. All the while, they discover a mutual affection for each other and have to deal with the prejudices forced upon them by the Christian community.
Back home, where Markus came from, he has no idea that be is being declared dead and his best friend is doing the ultimate betrayal...
This novel has a great story and lovable characters, especially the little boy, Tim. I love reading novels bout people taking on adversity with brace faces and standing up against bigotry.
I find it gave a fantastical novel a sense of harsh reality to show the Church's bad side, and show some of the more limited-minded of the readers that, just because you can't understand something, it doesn't mean it's evil. There is good and bad in every culture, class, race and religion, and Worlds Apart shows that perfectly.In no way is this novel unsuitable for any religion. I enjoyed it, and I believe in God. I know my Pagan friends will enjoy it, as well. It is so well-written that, no matter your personal beliefs, you will smile, cringe and maybe even tear up reading this excellent novel.
I do want to mention, however, that it is a funny (ironic) thing how the Christians accuse Markus of sexual abuse on an eight year old boy after the scandals that have come to light in recent years inside the Church!
All-in-all, it reinforced my personal belief that organized religion isn't what it's cracked up to be. Believe in what feels right, not what you're forced to, and it will enhance your life. Don't let anyone tell you your beliefs are wrong, as Carl tells Alcina.
I highly recommend it: it's entertaining and may even teach you something, too.
Purchase Worlds Apart via the following:
Barnes & Noble (paperback & Nook)