Challenges of the Gods Book Cover Challenges of the Gods
C. Hofsetz
Science Fiction w/ Fantasy & Romantic Elements
The Wild Rose Press, Inc
January 7, 2019
269

After Mike goes through a gut-wrenching betrayal by his fiancée, he finds himself in what he thinks might be the afterlife. But this is no heaven. The gods made a mistake and created another Earth in a parallel universe, putting both universes in peril. They need someone from his planet to destroy the alternate, and Mike is randomly selected for the job.

Trapped in an impossible choice, Mike accepts his mission and is returned to an Earth—and a body—so unlike his own. There, he meets Jane, who is—unbeknownst to him—the secret leader of an organization bent on tracking down Earth's saboteur. In the face of her passion for humanity, Mike's resolve falters. If Mike won't complete his mission, the gods will.

Reviewed by:   Douglas C. Meeks

Member of the Paranormal Romance Review Team

This one was a bit difficult to rate since it was chaotic all the way. Plus, our “hero” Mike, being more than a little paranoid just made it worse.

The general premise of the story is there are two Earths. By some cosmic mistake, this is discovered, and seemingly random people are sent to fight some battles, unravel some puzzles—and moles are sent to each “Earth” in hopes of destroying the other Earth. This, however, gets a bit thin.

The salvation of the story is the characters in this heavenly dimension (think of Purgatory but without the religious trappings) and the interactions between them.  The failing of this story is that you can see that everything is set up to make our hero, Mike, unique with no logical reasoning as to why he’s unique.  This combined with his leaps in logic that don’t quite fit, such as his immediate dislike for the Messengers while everyone else was almost worshiping them, makes him a challenge to understand.

At first, I thought Mike’s romantic efforts were pathetic. Purposefully or not, the author painted him perfectly as the nerd he is supposed to be. However, the author lets him slip into something of a superhero role (self-involvement in the plot?) on a regular basis which doesn’t fit well.

I did enjoy the story since it challenged me to try to figure out the real end game and it was unique and interesting. Sadly, after a novel filled with details and “day-in-the-life” stuff, the ending was horribly rushed and unfulfilling IMHO.

Bottom Line:  I thought I should give this 3 Stars, but given that I read it pretty much cover to cover with no scanning indicated it had an entertainment value that was worthy of 4 Stars. With a better ending, it could have been a better story.  A good content editor would have been nice also, but not a big thing.