Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Book Review - Beyond the Reflection's Edge

Jason Blue and Jason Red enjoyed the book; Jason Yellow isn't old enough to read yet.


This month's featured book for the Christian Sci-fi/Fantasy blog tour is Beyond the Reflection’s Edge by Bryan Davis.

Beyond is a contemporary sci-fi, fantastic story geared toward the young adult/teen crowd. That appealed to me just fine, as my wife claims I'm a big kid. Nathan Shepherd is a 16 year old child prodigy on the violin, who travels the world with his investigator dad and virtuoso mom, homeschooled by a plucky tutor named Clara. The story pulls no punches with the opening, and by the end of the first chapter Nathan's parents have been murdered and he is running for his life.

Nathan is taken to a safe haven in the Midwest with a friend of his parents', Tony Clark. He meets Tony's teenage daughter Kelly, who is a lot different than Nathan's Christian background. Together they start searching for clues to his parents' deaths, with a mirror that shows thoughts, a camera that takes pictures of things that aren't there, and a violin that speaks to Kelly. Soon they are drawn into a vast conspiracy involving the company Interfinity, which may be trying to use different dimensions to conquer all of them.

The book has an intriguing premise and a suspenseful plot. Davis uses a love of classical music to move key plot points along, which I really enjoyed exposing readers to the beauty involved there. Nathan and Kelly are rounded, interesting characters, and their evolving interaction helps the book along as well. Other characters seem to have less holistic appeal, appearing when needed to achieve a certain function for the plot. There are aspects of most characters that strain credulity: Nathan whips out martial arts, a friend of Kelly is a computer genius, just for a couple of examples. The Shepherds are a super-couple, and the mystery of their deaths is at the heart of the story, but the dad's role is especially confusing for a while.

The story does involve different dimensions, (labeled Red, Blue, and Yellow-thus the intro to this post), and it provides for good suspense, keeping the reader guessing what is reality and what is not. It can get confusing at times though, keeping Nathan Red and company separate from his other-colored versions. It also offers up an opportunity for some moral choices, and I felt there was a major point that was too glossed over, without exploring the consequences of the choices.

Overall, Davis has offered up an enjoyable conspiracy-tinged speculative fiction suspense. It has some flaws, but I am glad I bought it for this tour, and I plan on continuing with the series and passing it on to my teenage nephew.

If you are interested in more information, check out Bryan Davis' website, and his blog. The second book in the series, Eternity's Edge, is in stores now as well.

Finally, see my other blog tourmates for more on Beyond the Reflection's Edge:

Brandon Barr
Jennifer Bogart
Justin Boyer
Keanan Brand
Kathy Brasby
Jackie Castle
Valerie Comer
CSFF Blog Tour
Stacey Dale
D. G. D. Davidson
Shane Deal
Janey DeMeo
Jeff Draper
April Erwin
Karina Fabian
Marcus Goodyear
Andrea Graham
Todd Michael Greene
Katie Hart
Timothy Hicks
Joleen Howell
Mike Lynch
Terri Main
Rachel Marks
Melissa Meeks
Rebecca LuElla Miller
Eve Nielsen
John W. Otte
Steve Rice
Ashley Rutherford
Mirtika or Mir's Here
Chawna Schroeder
Greg Slade
James Somers
Steve Trower
Speculative Faith
Jason Waguespac
Laura Williams
Timothy Wise


  1. Sounds interesting!

  2. Thank you for posting about my book. I'm glad you enjoyed it overall.

    Bryan Davis

  3. Jason, you've done your usual impressive job reviewing the book. I'm glad you're recommending it to a YA you know. That's heartening because that's really why the tour exists. We want to see books and readers find each other. LOL