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Review: The Reincarnationist, M.J. Rose

When Josh was almost killed by a bomb in Rome, it triggered a sequence of past-life memories from which he cannot escape.  He realizes that he has been reincarnated and nearly two thousand years ago, he was a priest named Julius in love with a Vestal Virgin named Sabina.  He feels a need to find her and save her, but he doesn’t know how.  On a trip to Rome, his feet land him at an archaeological site where Sabina lies buried, leading to a murder, an investigation, and a desperate search to figure out what his memories are telling him and why.

This was a racing read and I had a hard time putting it down.  I originally won it to participate in By The Chapter, so I decided I would read it over the space of the week.  That definitely did not happen because I am not a patient person.  By the time I was halfway through I just had to know the ending, so I ended up finishing it in two days instead of five.  Oops.  It’s certainly addicting.

While Josh’s version of reincarnation sounds interesting, I don’t think I’d like to experience it in the same way that he does.  It sounds painful and I certainly wouldn’t want to long for a woman who had been dead for many years, knowing that I was looking for her in every face I saw.  It was quite curious how many people had been reincarnated, but I suppose we’d have to take it as a matter of course.  Many, many people have walked this planet before.  I thought the list of sources at the back even more interesting.  I had no idea that anyone studied this, and while I don’t believe it myself, I almost want to pick up one of those books just to learn more.

I don’t want to give anything away, but I did feel let down by the ending of this book.  While some loose ends were tied up, it felt like something of a cop-out and diminished the appeal of the rest of the work.  Despite that, I’d still love to read The Memorist, which is the sequel to this book.  I think the ride to the ending mattered more to me in this case.

This book is available from Amazon and Amazon UK.

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