A Force of Nature by Dan McEwen

A Force of Nature by Dan McEwen
Publisher: Friesen Press
Genre: Action/Adventure, Contemporary, Historical, Paranormal, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (193 pgs)
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Aloe

Part ghost story, part treasure hunt, part romance, A Force of Nature is all entertainment!!

Do you believe in Fate? Would you recognize it if it was happening to you? Then you’ll want to meet Toronto PR guru Claire Chandler. She grew up convinced greatness awaited her. Why else had she survived a series of bizarre childhood tragedies? Yet she doesn’t see what’s coming when she journeys north on a long weekend in August to Bay Harbour, a post-card pretty tourist town on the edge of Canada’s popular Georgian Bay vacationlands. She thinks she’s there to reconnect with a former mentor. But Chandler’s chilling affinity for the “unnatural and unexplained”, a macabre “gift” that once made her a freak of nature to classmates, will make her a force of Nature. Shadowed by a ghostly white wolf and haunted by the victims of a long-dead killer, she’ll discover a startling new ending to a fifty year-old mystery. She’ll also discover romance with Tom Katz, an affable, treasure-hunting bush pilot with a reputation for living up to his name. They’re an unlikely pair and Chandler thinks it’s just a summer fling. Instead, a series of white-knuckle adventures will bring them to a time, a place and a choice that will forever link their lives.

A debut novel by a practised writer, A Force of Nature puts a “crisp, intelligent and engaging” spin on the mystery genre.

She’s an orphan. She was abandoned as a baby and taken in by a couple who wanted and loved her. They’re gone now. She was married twice. Once to a bum and once to a very nice guy who had an epileptic fit and drowned in the hot tub. She’s off men now. She’s just doing her publicity work and she’s happy with that. But when she keeps running across pictures of her best boss and even the scrabble letters form her name, she knows she better go see Iris.

This author writes a very fast-paced story with short chapters. It reads up quickly and you wonder if the main character will get out of there alive. Claire see things. She also feels things. She’s learned to pay attention to these happenings; they have meaning for her. She’s also smart and thinks quickly which helps keep her alive. Mr. McEwen has no problem with using strong female characters in his story. The Native American male is just as strong but in other ways.

Iris lives up north in the woods of Canada. The author does a good job of weaving in a back story about dead Native American girls from the past and the various prejudices and characters of the current town. The mysticism that is worked in seems real. If you’ve ever had a wild animal look you in the eye for a while, you’d swear they are sending you a message. Most of the time, its leave me alone but that’s not what Claire sees.

There are wild animals, an escaped con, float planes and even a crazy cop in this story. From the beginning to the end, you’ll be flipping pages and wondering what will happen next. There’s good tension and suspense all the way through. After all the worry and trouble Mr. McEwen put his characters through, it was nice to read a positive ending. It may be happy ever after yet.

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