Today on Love Books Group, the wonderful Tanya Kaanta reviews Benevolent by Erin A. Jenson. Thank you for stopping by today, if you have time please leave a comment or share the post to social media.
Benevolent by Erin A. Jenson
A story about the purpose of life, the healing power of fandom, and the resilience of the human spirit.
Tormented by the in-crowd at school on a daily basis, there were two things that gave fifteen-year-old Abigail Perkins the strength to keep going—her best friend, Danny Cobb; and her favorite television show, Supernatural. But the night Danny’s mother calls to say that his battle with cancer is nearing its end, and the doctors don’t expect him to live through the night, even Supernatural can’t dull the ache in her heart.
Devastated by her impending loss and crushed that Danny’s mother won’t allow her to visit him one last time, Abigail crawls into bed and cries herself to sleep that night; and she wakes to find Supernatural’s most endearing angel standing at the foot of her bed.
Told from Abigail’s perspective as she nears the end of her long life and revisits the moments that defined it, this story was inspired by the deep connection that Supernatural fans feel with the show’s beloved characters, and the show’s miraculous ability to help its fans through troubled times.
100% of the net proceeds from this book will go to Random Acts charitable organization.
Random Acts inspires many amazing things around the world every day — from small acts of kindness, such as inspiring someone to buy a stranger a cup of coffee, to much bigger acts of kindness like building a school in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua.
To learn more about Random Acts visit randomacts.org
Erin A. Jensen is the Amazon International bestselling author of The Dream Waters Series. Her debut novel won the bronze medal for fantasy fiction in the 2018 Readers’ Favorite Book Awards and received honorable mention in the 2018 Writer’s Digest Self-Published e-book Awards. A part-time pharmacist and a full-time daydreamer, she lives in upstate New York with her husband and two sons
Guest Review by Tanya Kaanta
Benevolent starts and ends with cancer, though the story is about living life, second chances, having faith, and ultimately love.
Abigail’s remaining time on earth is short, as she succumbs to the cancer overtaking her brain. We meet Abigail as she phases in and out of consciousness, remembering highlights from her life, beginning when her best friend, Danny Cobb, passes from his own cancer in the ninth grade.
Danny and Abigail were best friends since third grade, bonded by being outcasts, bullied, and their love of the tv show Supernatural. Before Danny passes, he creates a music playlist of rock songs for Abbie to remember him. And so, we journey in Abigail’s memories as she recollects the past, each chapter highlighted by a song provided on Danny’s song list.
The author doesn’t shy away from Abigail’s struggles. I like that Abigail is not perfect, and she is able to overcome loss and addiction. Yet, Abigail is never alone. Her guardian angel, appearing in the image of the character Castiel from Supernatural, is always with her. He first reveals himself the night Danny passes, and then throughout different points in Abigail’s life. This faith in her guardian angel is the consistent theme throughout and I believe one of the morals of the story. Having faith, knowing we have guardian angels who can support us throughout our lives, and that there is a reason for everything that happens in life, even in times of tragedy. Love is ultimate.
So full disclosure, I am not religious nor have I seen one episode of Supernatural. However, I still read the book in one sitting. Having knowledge of the TV series is not pertinent to enjoying the story, and while Castiel is specifically referenced from the show, the Castiel in the book has his own personality and story, merely using the shell of the character in corporeal form.
Moreover, some folks who are die-hard atheists might find a specific chapter or two a bit preachy, but for me, if you take the word “bible” out of the passages, there are still universal themes of having faith in something larger than oneself, forgiving oneself, and realizing small acts of kindness can reap astronomical rewards. Finally, love is universal, regardless of choices made and whom you love. At least this is what I glean from the more “religious/philosophical” sections. Where heaven and hell aren’t necessarily places we go, but an existence with or without love. And therein lies the beauty of a book. We all read it from a different lens and pull gems that speak most to us.
I truly enjoyed the story, feel it’s a celebration of life and love, and yes, it has piqued my interest in Supernatural. Finally, I love how all proceeds from the sale of this book go to the charity random acts. For more info, visit: randomacts.org.
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