One Great Year
Tamara Veitch and Rene DeFazio
Greenleaf Book Group
Reviewed by Carolyn Cooke.
I just finished this novel a few days ago and my only regret is that I didn’t dive into it sooner when it landed on my desk. One Great Year is an outstanding novel for first-time authors Tamara Veitch and Rene DeFazio, and you can tell they put in the time and effort to really bring their ideas to life with engaging characters, plenty of action and fascinating backstory elements that make you think, even as you read furiously to find out what happens next.
As for the story, it revolves around Marcus, an advanced youth in the last days of Atlantis, or Atitala in the novel, who is one of the ones chosen to be an Emissary. Their mission is to go forward into the next ages as bearers of light and wisdom as the world descends from a golden age down to a dark, dangerous iron age. But Marcus, suspicious of a former childhood friend named Helghul, witnesses a disturbing dark ceremony and decides to take special potion to retain his memories from life to life—the same one Helghul took as he sets out to bring darkness and chaos to the world.
The action carries forward through the ages as Marcus tries his best to help the world while keeping Helghul in check and seeking out his fellow Emissary and soul mate, Theron, in every life he can. But the weight of his full recall and the never-ending battle with the forces of darkness are wearing him down.
In One Great Year Veitch and DeFazio do something ambitious I’ve not seen any other first-time authors tackle: melding together present-day science, particularly quantum physics, with ancient wisdom, and showing the many places the two meet and even overlap. The best part is that this is so well done it just sits in the background, where it sparks thoughts in the back of your mind. By the time you finish this novel, which is a hefty one, you are gently led to see the world in a whole new way. And that new worldview brings up questions, like how much of this is real and what does it really mean to you.
Reading One Great Year might well inspire you to do a little research, easily enough done with the footnotes and bibliography the authors include, and it might encourage you to stop a moment and rethink your own life and the choices you’ve made. And if nothing else, it will entertain you with a kaleidoscope of times, places, cultures and a whole lot of action as the forces of good and evil face off for the fate of the world in this spiritual thriller of a story.
Either way, pick up a copy and settle in for a wonderful ride.
Carolyn Cooke is a reporter for Surrey Now newspaper.by