Reviver by Seth Patrick (book review).

Revivers wake the dead, just for a few minutes, so they can say goodbye to loved ones or be questioned by the police to help catch their killers. Jonah Miller is one of the best revivers, called in to the most difficult cases, but now he’s burning out. At least, that’s what everyone else thinks when he starts seeing visions of dead men and becoming convinced that something is out there, beyond death, waiting for a way in. But what if everyone else is wrong?


‘Reviver’ is the first novel by Seth Patrick and it fits in somewhere between the genres of crime thriller and supernatural horror. With some good publicity and an intriguing premise, it had been on my ‘to read’ list since before it was released and I have to say that the interactive cover (see video on Panmacmillan website as it won’t run here: link http://bit.ly/191X5dR) really impressed me. It’s also a good way to creep out friends in the pub!

I’m glad to say that even though I’d been excited about this book for a while it was in no way a letdown when I finally came to read it. ‘Reviver’ is a fast-paced book with plenty of interesting plot details to keep you turning the pages in rapid succession. There are elements of crime fiction as Jonah tries to solve the murder of the man who first discovered revivers. We have a dash of potential romance between some of the characters and intrigue abounds with all the little mysteries that crop up throughout the book. Then, of course, there are the supernatural horror elements that come in with the question of what lies beyond the grave. The story is really nicely put together and all the plot elements combine to make a really good novel.

The plot is also helped along by some compelling characters. Jonah is very easy to like. He’s a guy who tries to do the right thing and, even if he sometimes gets it wrong, his intentions are good. This is particularly obvious in the way he treats the dead, with respect and kindness. Likewise, his sidekicks (for there’s no doubt that Jonah is the real star of this book) each have their own personalities and quirks and it makes them all very believable. I hope that at least some of them return for future books in this series.

‘Reviver’ is a very inventive novel and with great characters and a very tidy plot, it’s hard to see what’s not to like. This is supposed to be the first in a series and having read this first instalment I’m very much looking forward to seeing where Seth Patrick takes us next.

Vinca Russell

November 2013

(pub: Pan Macmillan. 409 page hardback. Price: £12.99 (UK). ISBN: 978-0-230-76501-6)

check out websites: www.panmacmillan.com and www.forensicrevivialservice.com

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