The Canary List, by Sigmund Brouwer
First, let me say that if you are Catholic, this book is not for you. This book attempts to do what Dan Brown did in The DaVinci Code – use the Catholic church as a backdrop, then throw mud and muck all over the Vatican. It will offend even the most liberal Catholic.
The story is about a young orphan girl (Jaimie) who supposedly can detect demons inside of people, a psychiatrist (Dr. Mackenzie) who is trying to help her, a teacher (Crockett), and the Catholic church.
On the anniversary of his daughter’s death, Crockett is drowning his sorrows at home. The girl shows up on his doorstep fearing for her life from “evil”. And then the story takes off.
But not really.
None of the characters are fully fleshed out, and the result leaves the reader unaffected. I kept reading hoping to get to know these people. The author only gives us small glimpses of what motivates these characters, but never really gives us an opportunity to understand them. It was no different than reading the local newspaper – you feel badly about the tragedies, but since they don’t really affect you, they don’t stick with you either.
The whole story is disjointed and even with suspending any sort of disbelief, it just didn’t flow well. Crockett must be some sort of real-life Superman, as he is beaten, tasered, hung, kidnapped…you name it, and still continues on with the energy of a teenager.
There isn’t one redeeming quality about any of the priests portrayed in the book. This author really has an axe to grind with the Catholic church.
It also felt like the author rushed the final third of the book. There were so many loose ends, and instead of tying them up neatly one-by-one, they just ended, without much thought or substance.
Plot aside, the editors really failed on this book too. There are disjointed sentences, and typos all over this book. It was a real distraction at times.
This book was a disappointment for me, and I probably won’t be passing it on to anyone else. It’s a shame because the basic story line had a lot of potential.