Thursday, 27 January 2011

Whisper from an Angel by Christine Holohan

As a recent convert to the world of non-fiction, I understand the trepidation many readers might have about branching away from the fun-filled land of fiction and into the real world. What I would suggest to those who are a little hesitant is to start with a memoir or two. Memoirs are written in the same narrative style as fiction but with the added bonus of knowing that what you are reading is not made up. Someone out there lived what you are reading and that for me gives it meaning. Think of how many times you have watched a film and reached the credits only to find that it is based on a true story. Did it change the way you looked at the film?

Now the only thing you need to ask yourself is what are you interested in - what gets you excited in a book and in life? Some people may love the celebrity world and thoroughly enjoy biographies, while others may have experienced some form of abuse and are comforted to know they are not alone in the world, choosing to find solace and inspiration in books about abuse victims who have managed to triumph in one way or another. For me, I'm just interested in a gripping story. I admit I am a sucker for a happy ending or some sort of resolution but all in all, I need a good struggle and a way out of that struggle if a story is going to keep me interested.

...which leads me onto this book. Whisper from an Angel tells the story of its author, Christine Holohan, who has seen spirits as far back as she can remember and has communicated with them for most of her life. What makes the book so compelling is the incredible way this gift (or curse as she often sees it herself) has transformed her life in ways even she, a psychic, could not foresee. It is horrifying to think that she saw visions of people dying before it happened but was unable to stop it and that she was haunted by ghosts in her everyday life, affecting her attempts at work and relationships.

This reached its pinacle when she was visited by an angry female spirit who had just been murdered. Christine found herself trying to relay the details of the murder, which she had been forced to relive through the eyes of the spirit, to the sceptical police who were investigating the crime in an attempt to help them find the murderer. Her involvement in the case would not be as brief and resolute as she hoped and she would be plagued by its events for a long time after. In the midst of this horror she found comfort in family and friends who never ridiculed her for her abilities and remained loyal.

Christine writes in an incredibly open and honest way about her own personal struggles. I only found a tiny part at the end slightly preachy but it didn't bother me. Christine mearly shows the reader how her spirituality has helped her through her life and offers her opinion on guardian angels and how they are around us trying to guide us and keep us on the right path. Whether you choose to believe that or not is up to you.

Obviously, if you are something of a cynic and don't believe in anything you cannot see or touch then this may not be the book for you but I personally found its mix of spirituality, personal struggle and crime solving a winning formula.

Christine - I applaud you for such a brave book. Well done.

LE xx


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