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23 March 2014

Journey Into The Mystic
Jesse Giles Christiansen
Publication Date
16 January 2014
mystery, native American

From Goodreads

After a tragic accident, Joel panics and runs for Alaska. Followed by the FBI, CIA, and a bizarre woman whom he meets on a train, Joel finds himself truly on a journey into the mystic. In order to unravel a dilemma that grants him the summer of his life, he must delve into Native American Mysticism, genetic tampering, and into his own heart.
When we first meet Joel,a 22 year old college kid, he is on the train on his way to Alaska. He carries a duffle bag with him which he guards. The bag contains the dead body of a child. But there is something not quite right about this child. It looks unnaturally white, has no hair whatsoever and the proportions of its face are not quite right. Joel can only think one thing: He has to run away, and best far away - to Alaska. The death of the child is nothing more than an unfortunate accident. But what Joe does not realise at this stage is that he isn't just simply running away from facing responsibility for the death, but there seems to be more to his child than Joel realises at first. And Joel's journey and his fate are connected to this child.  This is the start of an adventure for Joel into Alaska's wilderness, onto fishing boats and than back into the desert and underground government facilities where various agencies have an interest in this child. Joel goes on a journey of discovery during this summer and will never be the same again. 

The book for me was like the X-Files crossed with wild and beautiful Alaskan countryside and Native American mysticism. One thing which will stay in my mind is the author's vidid descriptions of the Alaskan fisherman's work on the boat. Can anyone who comes from a city environment imagine the world of not only fishermen, but also those working on the processing plants? There is one episode where Joel has to push the barrels with the fish guts and can do nothing but vomit every few steps- God, I felt for him and almost felt physically sick myself. 

And than there is Tina who Joel first meets on the train Joel's relationship with Tina is an odd one… not one of your usual love stories. She is not your traditional beauty, in fact the first description for her is probably rather off-turning:
" Her shorts rode as high as shorts can ride, cut from old jeans, and out of them leaked bean pole legs, over-tanned. She wore a tank top too big for her, forlornly gaping about her very small waist. Her dirty bra exposed itself like a bastard's smile."

and I do love her for that straight away. Tina is also a narrator in some of the chapters to give her POV. 

I was never bored and the story moves along quickly. So sit back and enjoy the ride with Joel and Tina. 

I have received this book from the author in return for an honest review.

From Amazon:


Jesse Giles Christiansen is an American author who writes compelling literary fiction that weaves the real with the surreal. He attended Florida State University where he began writing short stories and exposing himself to the great literary classics, his greatest influences at the time consisting of London, Hemingway, and Wilde. He received his B.A. in English literature in 1993.

He wrote his first novel, About: Journey into the Mystic after spending a summer in Alaska working on fishing boats. His newest novel, Pelican Bay, part of a series, focuses on a mysterious old fisherman and the unforgettable lessons he imparts on an eccentric, nosy, sea-battered beach town.

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