Thursday, September 21, 2017

Book Review: 'AURA' by K.M. Aul

Georgia author KM Aul has a depth of experience in the world of people and labor that should keep him writing for years! He has worked in industries ranging from raw chemicals to consumer goods and has owned and operated businesses ranging from retail coffee stores to Karate Dojos. His travels have taken him throughout North America, Europe, and Asia, and he warmly states that these experiences have taught him that all people matter. His books to date are SYNESTHESIA, DULCET, TA’AM and AURA – the first book of his series he terms THE SENSES. His novels are in the Christian fiction genre and his reading audience is meant to be ages 12 – 18.

Aul wisely incorporates the inviting uses of a Prologue, since this is Book One of this series – ‘The six of us sit close to the fire. Some to warm themselves, some just to be near the light and all of us for the company. We are huddled here in this cold, quiet place waiting and knowing that soon we will be all that stands between a world full of life and an eternity of darkness. The six of us have two things in common; we were all born sometime from mid-July through the end of August during the Perseid meteor shower, though on different years and we all have a handicap that is our gift, our talent. Diane has told us all that we have to write about our journeys. She’ll record and preserve them for us because some or all of us may not make it to the other side of this. Diane isn’t one of the six of us, but she has a talent all her own. My name is Jacob, and this is the story of the journey that brought me to this place.’ The format for the series is set and is most inviting.

The senses of each of these characters will provides the focus of the journey, but the story lies solidly in the fantasy fiction role. Aul describes the direction of this, is initial novel, and does so by taking the primary character Jacob form infancy into adulthood – ‘Time is up. There is nothing you can do and no place that you can hide. Your comfortable existence is about to vanish forever. Darkness is falling and none of us may survive. Near the end, a handful of heroes will emerge that may or may not be able to save us. The evil that we face is all-consuming and those that stand between it and us are so very few. Each of these heroes has a disability that is tied to their unique talent.
Jacob is blind since birth, yet able to see and manipulate the very life-force that is in and surrounds each living thing. He, along with Rachel and Clarisse, will battle the human shaped simulacrums that their real enemy uses. Survival isn’t just winning this battle, it’s finding others like them to help, and winning the war. Reality is not what you think.’

The novel is relative short (just over 200 pages) but in this span Aul is able to construct a novel that is at once compelling and spellbinding. Fine start for a new series! Grady Harp, September 17

Editor's note: This review has been published with the permission of Grady Harp. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.

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