James Markert’s novel “The Angels’ Share” asks an interesting question — what if Jesus came back to Earth?
It’s 1934 and William McFee has two dreams: to become a top notch reporter and to become a master distiller while reopening his family’s bourbon distillery, which never reopened after Prohibition. But his father Barley, who has a secret and danger-filled past, cannot get over the death of his youngest child, Henry, who had a special gift of dancing, and therefore has no interest in reopening the family business.
Everything changes one day, though, when a drifter, Asher Keating, is buried in the potter’s field next to the McFee property. Called the Potter’s Field Christ because he seemed to be able to heal people and perform other miracles while alive, masses of people visit Asher’s grave, looking for healing and miracles from the dead man many considered the second coming of Christ.
When the dead man’s healing power reaches from the grave and touches the McFees, William begins to see changes for the better — both in himself and his father.
“The Angels’ Share” is an interesting tale of forgiveness (of one’s self as well as others), belief and faith. It also deals with very real topics like homelessness, mental illness, feuds and loyalty. It delves into the idea of prodigies and that we all have different degrees of giftedness. It constantly repeats the idea of God sometimes give a little “extra” to some people, and sometimes those people need to be protected.
Anyone who enjoys historical fiction, reading about the Prohibition and Depression eras, the post-World War I era, the history of distilling bourbon and whiskey, or the impact of the KKK during the 1920s and ’30s will enjoy this novel. A slight warning — it does contain some violence and some very mild swearing and mild inferences to sensual situations. Fans of writers like Billy Coffey will enjoy author James Markert and his latest novel “The Angels’ Share.”
Four stars out of five.
Thomas Nelson provided this complimentary copy for my honest, unbiased review.