Sunday, August 7, 2016

G726 Book Review of Loreena's gift by Colleen m. Story

Name of Book: Loreena's Gift

Author: Colleen M Story

ISBN: 978-1-938103-47-6

Publisher:  Dzanc Books

Type of book: Idaho, 1967, angel of mercy, kill, secrets, blindness, church, family, siblings, gangs, selling out, kidnapped

Year it was published: 2016



Loreena Picket thinks she knows herself. A blind young woman who lives with her uncle, a reverend at a small-town church, she's a dutiful niece and talented pianist for the congregation.

But they're both hiding a terrible secret. Loreena can kill people with the touch of her hand.

While her uncle sees her as an angel of mercy, helping usher the terminally ill members of his flock into the afterlife, Loreena has her doubts.

Torn between doing her uncle's bidding and the allure of the fleeting moments when her eyesight returns on the journey to the other side, Loreena cooperates with her uncle until her troubled older brother returns to town. When she reveals her power by saving him from a local drug dealer, she is drawn into a sinister and dangerous world that will test the true nature of her talent and force her to consider how far she is willing to go to survive.

An exciting debut that crosses fantasy and literary fiction, Loreena's Gift is a thought-provoking meditation on life and death and what ultimately lies beyond this world.


Main characters include Loreena, a young blind woman who only knows church, her uncle and her terrible gift. Loreena is an orphan and she is also close to her uncle and desires to have a good relationship with her older brother. She is best described as naive, resourceful and determined to do what she can, even if she doesn't want to do it. Loreena's older brother is best described as rebellious and someone who gets into trouble. He is not close to the uncle and does things he might regret. Dominic is Loreena's love interest and has a good sense of humor as well as an easy-going personality and he cares for Loreena very deeply. He also has his own secret that he hides from Loreena. There are other characters such as the gang members, or the man that is helpful to Loreena as well as the woman Mrs. Markos who is best described as resigned to her life.


Afterlife is a personal choice


The story is in third person narrative from Loreena's point of view. I have to admire that the author chose for the character to be blind, thus eliminating the descriptions of colors and whatever else sight provides. There are a few times that the author goofs up though, or where I have to wonder on how much Loreena can see and how much she can sense which is not clear for me in the story.

Author Information:
(From iRead Book Tours)

Meet the Author:

​Colleen M. Story writes imaginative fiction and is also a freelance writer, instructor, and motivational speaker specializing in creativity, productivity, and personal wellness. Her latest novel, "Loreena’s Gift," was released with Dzanc Books April 12 2016. Her fantasy novel, "Rise of the Sidenah," is a North American Book Awards winner, and New Apple Book Awards Official Selection (Young Adult). She is the founder of Writing and Wellness ( a motivational site for writers and other creatives. 

Connect with the author:  Website  ~ Twitter  


To be honest, I am rating the book as 3.5 stars, which I am rounding up to 4 stars. In quite a few cases, I enjoyed reading magical realism/ supernatural novels, and while there are parts that strongly appealed to me such as the scenes between Loreena and her love interest as well as the scenes where she is with her family, the main parts about her gift or her life with a local gang seems to lose that sparkle. What I also found a bit frustrating was the beginning of the summary because it caused me to think that with each soul Loreena ferries, she regains her eyesight permanently, but in fact she regains her eyesight temporarily on the other side which caused me to be disappointed. In an odd way as well the story reminded me of Remember Me by Christopher Pike because both deal with afterlife and how it appears to themselves as well as others.

This is for iRead Book Tours


July 18 - Cheryl's Book Nook - review / author interview / giveaway
July 18 - Bound 4 Escape - review
July 19 - Writing Pearls - review
July 19 - Jayne's Books - review
July 20 - Young In Rome - review
July 20 - And the Buck Starts Here - review
July 21 - Writers and Authors - book spotlight / guest post
July 22 - Corinne Rodrigues - review
July 22 - 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & Sissy, Too! - review / giveaway
July 25 - A Bookaholic Blog - review
July 25 - Nighttime Reading Center - review / author interview / giveaway
July 26 - JBronder Book Reviews - review / guest post
July 27 - T's Stuff - review / guest post / giveaway
July 27 - Book reviews nature photos and everything in between - review
July 28 - Sahar's Blog - review
​July 29 - Life as Leels - review
July 29 - The Autistic Gamer - review
Aug 1 -    Bookishly Devoted - review
Aug 1 -    Olio By Marilyn - review / author interview
Aug 2 -    Heidi's Wanderings - review / giveaway
Aug 2 -    Bookaholic Banter  - review / author interview / giveaway
Aug 3 -    Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers - review
Aug 4 -    The Travelogue of a Book Addict - The Book Drealms - review / giveaway
Aug 4 -    bookmyopia - review / giveaway
Aug 5 -    Svetlana's Reads and Views - review
Aug 5 -    Jessica Cassidy - review / author interview / giveaway

4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

1 comment:

  1. I truly enjoyed the depth offered in Loreena's Gift. The idea of an afterlife defined by our current life, the battle of good versus evil and love are all intertwined into a great read.


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