A Vision of Angels by Timothy Jay Smith
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
A Vision of Angels by Timothy Jay Smith is a tragic and suspenseful tale that revolves around a planned terrorist attack for Easter Sunday in Jerusalem. The lives of an American journalist, Israeli war hero, Palestinian farmer and Christian grocer are weaved together and changed forever as a result of this single event that is set to take place amidst the Israeli/Palestinian conflict.
It is a story that moves at a fast pace and switches between perspectives of the characters just as quickly. The destruction, desolation and desperation caused by the conflict is at times brutally confronting, but gives the story an underlying human perspective that is too often missed in modern media reporting.
Smith does well to give all sides involved in the conflict a voice, and I found it a particularly interesting read in the sense that it gave new perspective to an old war. However, whilst the nature of the conflict itself kept me interested enough to continue reading, I found it impossible to either like or relate to any of the characters in the story. Whilst they are all dynamic, complicated characters for whom I felt empathy or a general disdain for, I couldn't connect with them in such a way that made me feel invested in their stories. For this reason, it was merely the conflict itself and not the stories of the individual characters taking place within it that gained and held my attention.
Overall, A Vision of Angels is an interesting yet confronting depiction of the ways in which conflict can tear a nation apart and yet bring it together at the same time.
Recommended to readers of contemporary fiction and those with a particular interest in current world politics.
Thank you to the author for inviting me to read and review this novel.