"A Killer's Grace" Book Review by Crystal J. Casavant-Otto

Monday, September 12, 2016
A Killer’s Grace will stay with you long after you finish reading the final page.

From the high desert of New Mexico comes a tale of mystery, murder and redemption. When journalist Kevin Pitcairn receives a disturbing letter from a serial killer, he is drawn into a compelling journey with profound psychological and spiritual implications, not just for the murderer, but for himself and society as a whole. As he tries to investigate and then tell the story, he finds himself battling his own inner demons and sordid history. Events conspire to propel an isolated matter to a national stage and audiences that are increasingly hostile. Forced to explore the roots of human psychology and sanity, Pitcairn must navigate moral and philosophical realms. What is the nature of evil? What powers of choice do humans actually possess? How may we be redeemed? And in the end, how do we reconcile with ourselves?

“…a work of fction, it was inspired by a real letter from a serial killer…important and compelling… will stay with you long after the last page.”
—Kam Aures, reviewer for Rebecca’s Reads

“A Killer’s Grace delves deep into the human psyche… Those who have experienced abuse or violence in their own lives will not only relate to the story, but may find their own self-discovery journey unfolding alongside Kevin’s.”
—Paula Renaye, author, Living the Life You Love: The No-Nonsense Guide to Total Transformation

Paperback: 240 Pages
Genre: Fiction/Spirituality
Publisher: Terra Nova Books; 2 edition (September 1, 2016)
ISBN-10: 1938288750
ISBN-13: 978-1938288753

A Killer’s Grace is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and IndieBound.

...........Review by Crystal J. Casavant-Otto

Have you ever read something that left you second guessing your previous thoughts and opinions? Ronald’s Chapman’s novel “A Killer’s Grace” did just this. Chapman’s suspenseful storytelling style was a delight to read. The redemption question of the novel is what stayed with me well after the last page had been turned.

The main character, Kevin Pitcairn (journalist) receives a letter from a serial killer awaiting execution. The psychological and spiritual journey begins with the letter and is something that is ongoing for both Pitcairn and the reader of “A Killer’s Grace”. This is a story that delves into the darkness and makes you question right and wrong, good and bad, retribution and forgiveness, virtuous acts and acts of evil.

Pitcairn is the protagonist…maybe…but you can’t necessarily say he is the protagonist and Davidson is the antagonist. If only it were that easy. Their tales are woven together at points to show how retribution can be self-inflicted. Pitcairn inflicted punishments on himself through his lifestyle and choices just as Davidson, the serial killer was sentenced to die because of murders he had committed. Stoic Biblical Philosophers would argue sin is sin and there is no greater sin and no lesser sin. This argument continued to plague me from cover to cover as I wrestled with my own belief system. I was shaken to the core as I came to realization that I was as interested in Davidson’s background and story as well as Pitcairn’s journey. This isn’t so much a story of man vs. society as it is a story of man vs. himself. Ultimately, this is a story of understanding: a story of redemption.

The imagery in “A Killer’s Grace” is depicted beautifully. There is something poetic, beautiful, and artistic about Ronald Chapman’s writing style. The scenery is graphic and colorful. The words Chapman chooses are articulate and carefully chosen. You can visualize nearly every encounter. To give you a better example of this, please read this short excerpt from page 125 in the print version:

Pitcairn lurched to a stop, caught by the unexpected mirror of his own unvoiced fears. He slowly drew a ragged breath…

It is clear in this example and throughout the book that Chapman is a gifted storyteller with an amazing amount of style.

“A Killer’s Grace” is not a story about a murderer. That’s what so many people assumed when they heard I was reading it. It is a love story. There is a deep undying agape love between Cito and Maria Elisa. There is the philia love between Pitcairn and the sponsors who help him maintain his sobriety, and another love I have a hard time admitting…but the storge love a reader may feel for Davidson. I don’t feel sorry for any serial killer, but I certainly feel that empathy that led Davidson to his position. Empathy in itself is such a complicated emotion (further muddied with the idea of redemption).

“A Killer’s Grace” is a multifaceted novel. It touches on spirituality, love, forgiveness, and redemption. If you’re ready to take a journey of self-discovery, I suggest picking up a copy of Ronald Chapman’s book. You will not be disappointed.

About the Author:

Ronald Chapman is owner of an international speaking and consulting company, Magnetic North LLC. In addition to international accreditation as a speaker and national awards for radio commentary, he is the author of two novels, My Name is Wonder (Terra Nova Publishing, 2016) and A Killer's Grace (Terra Nova Publishing, 2016 and 2012), two works of non-fiction, Seeing True: Ninety Contemplations in Ninety Days (Ozark Mountain Publishing, 2008) and What a Wonderful World: Seeing Through New Eyes (Page Free Publishing, 2004) and the producer of three audio sets, Seeing True: The Way of Spirit (Ozark Mountain Publishing, 2016, 2005), Breathing, Releasing and Breaking Through: Practices for Seeing True (Ozark Mountain Publishing, 2015), and Seeing True – The Way of Success in Leadership (Magnetic North Audio, 2005). Ron provides a wide array of social media content at www.SeeingTrue.com, content for people in substance abuse recovery at www.ProgressiveRecovery.org, and other content from his master site, www.RonaldChapman.com. He holds a Masters in Social Welfare from The University at Albany (New York.) Prior to his relocation to Atlanta, Georgia in 2008, he was a long-time resident of Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Ronald can also be found online at:

GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1338592.Ronald_Chapman

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/seeingtrue/

----------Upcoming Blog Tour Dates

Tuesday, September 13 @ Beverley A Baird
Beverley A Baird reviews A Killer's Grace by Ronald Chapman. Find out more about this highly acclaimed novel.

Wednesday, September 14 @ Book Santa Fe
Elizabeth Seratt reviews Ronald Chapman's A Killer's Grace.

Thursday, September 15th @ Bring on Lemons with Cathy Kwilinski
Cathy Kwilinski reviews Ronald Chapman's A Killer's Grace.

Friday, September 23 @ Renee's Pages
Tange Dudt reviews A Killer's Grace by Ronald Chapman; find out what she had to say after reading this highly acclaimed novel!

Get Involved! If you have a website or blog and would like to host one of our touring authors or schedule a tour of your own, please email us at blogtour@wow-womenonwriting.com.

About today's reviewer: Crystal is a church musician, babywearing mama (aka crunchy mama), business owner, active journaler, writer and blogger, Blog Tour Manager with WOW! Women on Writing, Publicist with Dream of Things Publishing, as well as a dairy farmer. She lives in Manitowoc County, Wisconsin with her husband, four young children (Carmen 9, Andre 8, Breccan 2, and Delphine 1), two dogs, two rabbits, four little piggies, a handful of cats and kittens, and over 230 Holsteins.

You can find Crystal riding unicorns, taking the ordinary and giving it a little extra (making it extraordinary), blogging and reviewing books, baby carriers, cloth diapers, and all sorts of other stuff at:http://bringonlemons.blogspot.com/ and http://muffin.wow-womenonwriting.com/


Unknown said...

Crystal, beautifully seen and said! Loved that you concluded it is a story of understanding, which is ultimately the basis for empathy, forgiveness and redemption. Thank you for being so thorough in your review and the content as well. Very much appreciated! Ron Chapman

Crystal Otto said...

It's been such a pleasure to read your work Ron - I can't choose which was more interesting, the chance to interview you or the chance to review A Killer's Grace. Either way - I appreciate you sharing your writing with the world!

Angela Mackintosh said...

Crystal, what a beautiful, detailed review! The book sounds thought provoking and unlike any other books out there--unique! Thanks for sharing. :)

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