Sunday, June 1, 2014

Shaman Rises: The Walker Papers by C.E. Murphy--The Highly Anticipated Book That Concludes this Exciting Series--Released 06-24-14!

Shaman Rises: The Walker Papers by C.E. Mur-
phy, is to be released on June 24, 2014. You can
preorder your copy now. If you haven't, yet,
read the other books, there is still time, if you
hurry along. [1]
Book Review by:
Sharon Powers.

     "Carrie Little Turtle, moving at lightning speed, came out of nowhere and tried to rip my face off...The only thing that saved me was the sheerly instinctive flight reaction of falling over backward because something was in my face....I was surrounded and... instead of kicking ass, I was slowly wearing down....I reined in the magic and even drew it out of the sword, so it was just me and a silver rapier against seven wights on a mountainside. It was the moment they'd been waiting for. They moved as one, so fast I could barely see them...."
 
     "[A] wight's blank face curdled into a hideous smile, and beyond it I saw the others, including Carrie, coming toward me for a final time...My vision got woozy, way faster than I'd have thought possible, and I had the utterly childish thought 'This is not fair!' before I dropped to my knees, wondering faintly how I was going to get out of this one."

This is a 1969 Mustang in a rare,
"Indian Fire Red." It is a similar car
to the one Joanne Walker loves and
named, "Petit." Of course, Petit was
painted a custom purple and had
vanity plates with name, "Petit."
What is not to love about this
beautiful car? Petit is every bit as
much a character in the book
as is Joanne. You'll have to read,
Shaman Rises, to see if it made it
through the series to the end. [2]
     "Petit, my big beloved 1969 Boss 302 Mustang, custom purple paint job and Washington State vanity plates declaring her name, hit the brakes behind me, spun a flawless 180 in a spray of red dust, and came to a shuddering stop not ten inches from my nose. Morrison flung her door open, stood up with his duty weapon in hand, and shot Carrie Little Turtle between the eyes" (Mountain Echoes: The Walker Papers, pp. 108-114). [3]

     And so, we have one of the finest entrances ever: Morrison, AKA the cavalry coming over the hill (literally), to rescue our heroine! This entrance comes to us from Mountain Echoes, the book just before Shaman Rises (the final book of the Walker series). In all of C.E. Murphy's series, this is, undoubtedly, one of my favorite scenes, and maybe even, could comprise my favorite quote. The writing quality is unbeatable! How can you not love the tension created in this scene, the unexpected and dramatic entrance of Morrison--saving Jo. Wow! Wow! Wow! 


Book 8: Mountain Ech-
oes
 by C.E. Murphy. [3]

     In Mountain Echoes, C.E. Murphy cleverly crafts book 8 of the series to set it all up for the final installment of the series, The Walker Papers, by bringing themes, characters, and action closer to the series' conclusion in the highly anticipated final book. Joanne clashed with The Master (her arch nemesis), but it cost her dearly. Her father has gone missing and so, she returns to North Carolina to search for him. Shockingly, she meets a son she had birthed and left behind  many years ago. Complications involving dark magic come to the fore, involving Joanne and even her son, Aidan. The only question is, will she be able to turn back time and put things right? And then, of course, there's the huge cliff hanger when Gary calls Jo to tell her that his wife, Annie, is alive. WHAT?

THE SERIES


C.E. Murphy brings Cernunnos into the first
book, Urban Shaman, and we see him
throughout the series. I really liked how
C.E. Murphy included him in the plot lines
in the final book of the series. [4]
      C.E. Murphy begins her final book, Shaman Rises, with a short synopsis of each of her books in the Walker Papers series. If you haven't read the other books, but want to read  Shaman Rises, you can get up to speed on what has come before by reading the introduction with the mini synopsis for each book. I think this is a very thoughtful thing for C.E. Murphy to include in her book--she definitely gets points for that, right up front!

     The short synopsis of each book is also good for those of us who have read the books, because we can use them as a refresher for the earlier, foundational, part of the series. While I do recommend that you read the other books, I can understand the excitement of wanting to plow ahead to find out just how the series will be concluded.

     I have, for your convenience, created a short, mini, synopsis of each book, in chronological order. To look at the brief synopsis of each book of the series, please click the link to that page, here.


SHAMAN RISES

Short Synopsis of Shaman Rises:
     Throughout the series we have seen Jo first, struggle to accept her path as a shaman, and then to accept love, and finally to fight for her life and her soul. None of that seems more true than in C.E. Murphy's, Shaman Rises, to be released to book sellers on June 24, 2014.

     In this final book of the series we know Jo will have all her friends and allies around her. We know she has been preparing over the course of the past eight books, short story, and novella, to meet her old arch enemy. We probably suspect that he will have his own minions, as Jo has friends and allies. In this book, Jo gets to meet the biggest, evilest, baddest, baddie of them all...The Master.

I wanted to give you this graphic because in this image is
none other than Gary Muldoon. Yes, the same Gary Mul-
doon who is Jo's cabbie friend, the same Gary Muldoon
who calls Jo in the paragraph to the right--telling her that
his wife, Annie, is alive. Readers and fans all clamored
for a story about Gary; C.E. Murphy obliged with the no-
vella, No Dominion. That's why Gary gets his own cover![5]
    But it is Book 8, Mountain Echoes, that sets up the final book. It closes with a phone call from Gary, like this: [Gary said,] "'I called yesterday. You didn't call back. I'm in Seattle.' His voice was older and shakier than I'd ever heard it. I got up, hands cold and stomach in knots. 'I only saw the message a little while ago and hadn't had a chance--Gary, what's wrong? What's going on? Why are you in Seattle?' [Gary responds,] 'It's Annie, Jo. It's my wife. She's alive'" (p. 343).


     HOLY MACKEREL! What a cliffhanger! I could hardly wait to get Book 9 and see what was up with that, I can tell you. All the time Jo has known Gary, his Annie has been dead (approximately 15 months). She, reportedly, had been dead for three years before that. So, I just couldn't wait for C.E. Murphy to address this humongous cliff hanger in Shaman Rises! I've been on pins and needles, waiting. And let me tell you...its a doozie! The book does indeed start out with the cliff hanger and from there, gets even more exciting and complex as you turn the pages. Jo meets her old adversary, The Master. We know she is in for the fight of her life. The excitement is nonstop right to the very end.

     The publishers have told us that The Master is "bringing the final battle to Seattle." I think, though, anyone who has been a fan of the series, would suspect that that's where the battle would take place, not the Arizona desert. The publishers also tell us that "[l]ives will be lost as the repercussions of all Joanne's final transformation into her full Shamanic abilities come to her doorstep. [And that:] Before the end, she'll mourn, rejoice...be a warrior and a healer. Because she is finally a Shaman Rising." [6]

WHAT I THINK ABOUT THE BOOK!

     First, I have already told you how much I wanted to read this book and sate myself on the Titanic conclusion of this wonder- ful series. I can hardly believe I have the privilege to read and review this book before its release date. Reading and reviewing books--something I dearly LOVE to do.

     Second, I think I've already kinda given away just how excited I've been waiting for this book. So...I suppose, if I have any biases towards this book, it comes from me being an avid fan of C.E. Murphy's whole The Walker Papers series.

     Third, it is brilliant the way she connected book 8 to book 9. Wow! She had me on the hook and kept me there. And then, with the opening of book 9, I was mesmerized. Finally! I got to find out what happened--the suspense was nothing short of amazing.

Here's a simple graphic I found for you to see the
character arc most writers use to make sure their
character doesn't lose their way through the book. [7]
     And then, after I had those questions answered, Murphy threw in more suspense and issues with which Jo had to "Rise" to the occasion (of course, she had help from her support group). Even so, Jo has to face some loss in her battle to save Seattle; indeed, the world. To save her friends and allies, and the city she loves, Jo lets confidence fill her, and she "Rises," indeed, as a "Shaman" (just as the title of the book proclaims).

     I found tears on my cheeks before the end of the book. I cannot say why. I found satisfaction in the final results of the book. Again, I cannot say why. And I found a profound sense of loss at having arrived at the final page of this wonderful series. If you have read the previous books, I need not say why.

     In the very first book--of any series--the reader is presented a story, and within that story being birthed upon the pages, we wonder what the book, the child of the author, will become. We are asked to be patient as that child grows with each novel. We are to watch as the child matures a bit with each new installment. The author implies that we will, in time, see the child to maturity, we will have the answer we seek. We, as readers, have spent money on that book/child, and time, and perhaps put a bit of ourselves into the pages of the book as well with our laughter, tears, hopes and longings.


C.E. Murphy answers the questions that readers have been
asking from the beginning of the series. She answers the
questions, but as much as I would like to divulge those
answers to you, I can't. I must tell you, though, when you
read this book, you will thoroughly enjoy every agonizing
wonderful minute of it. Now. Go. Read. The. Book!
Book release date: 06-24-14. [8]

     Any author who does not show us that the child, from its birth as pure potential, has grown into a being of substance, is an author who has abandoned the child and the reader. C.E. Murphy has not only delivered an answer as to who Jo would become and how she will fulfill her role in this (spiritual) world, she has given us all a pleasure-filled and satisfying journey while doing so. The loss of certain characters along the way is part of the growth, part of the experience, part of the journey that the protagonist and reader must make.

MY RECOMMENDATIONS AND RATING: 

     This book is of the urban fantasy genre. Within the pages of the book we have death, physical assault, black magic and chase scenes. For anyone who is of a sensitive nature, I would caution you to consider the subject material. For those of us mature adults, who do not fit into that category, I am sure you will thoroughly enjoy this book just as I did (and the rest of the series, if you haven't read it).

     For all the wonderful reasons I have given, above, I rate this book 5.0 stars out of 5. As much as I loved Urban Shaman, I love Shaman Rises more. C.E. Murphy delivered.

[9]
     Thank you for taking time to read this book review today, about Shaman Rises. Join me again, next week, as we pick up another book to see if it delivers as well as C.E. Murphy's Shaman Rises. Until then, pick up a book and read, a bit. Get lost in the story. Find yourself in the story. Just read. God bless you.

Until next time...
[10]
...many happy pages of reading.

All my love,

Sharon Powers.









REFERENCES
_________________________________________________________
[1] "Shaman Rises: The Walker Papers." amazon.com. Retrieved 05-29.14.
[2] "Collector Car Price Tracker." collectorcarpricetracker.com. Retrieved 05-29.14.
[3] "Mountain Echoes: The Walker Papers." amazon.com. Retrieved 05-29-14.
[4] "Cernunnos." cernunnoscamp.org. Retrieved 05-29-14.
[5] "No Dominion." kickstarter.com. Retrieved 05-30-14.
[6] "Shaman Rises." amazon.com. Retrieved 05-30-14.
[7] "Linda Clare's Writer's Tips: July 2010." lindasclare.com. Retrieved 05-30-14.
[8] "Your Questions Answered!" aft243.org. Retrieved 05-30-14.
[9] "The Old Computer." the oldcomputer.com. Retrieved 05-30-14.
[10] "28 White Roses Pictures For Free Download." funstock. Retrieved 05-22-14.

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