Book Review: ‘Fatal Reality’

In a time when reality shows garner the highest ratings, a new one debuts. Set on an island, it involves six contestants, includes a perilous race, and boasts the biggest prize in history.

There’s just one problem: neither the contestants nor the audience has a clue about a new player—or that player’s new rule. Only the winner gets out alive.

Fatal Reality (OakTara Publishing) is the debut novel by CWG Craftsman graduate Jonathan Wakefield. Wakefield introduces Kyle Borders, a respected evangelical leader who teaches the importance of believers being real. Kyle joins the game with the hope of winning souls. However, Kyle keeps a secret from everyone—including himself. A disturbed contestant takes it upon himself to reveal just how fake Kyle is.

In addition to Kyle and his nemesis, joining the game are an atheist who believes humanity won’t reach its full potential until it throws off the shackles of antiquated beliefs, an Islamic naval officer seeking the truth, a banker who’ll do anything to get to the top, a former NFL football player trying to regain his pride, and a host who has never seen beyond himself and his next contract.

A 2009 Operation First Novel finalist, Fatal Reality tackles the story from multiple points of view, through most of the characters’ eyes. I was drawn in, connecting with and rooting for each for various reasons. I wanted them to put aside their differences long enough for everyone to make it to the end alive.

In a few places Fatal Reality’s heavy dialogue hampers the action. However, overall the book engages and provokes the reader to think about how the choices we make and the secrets we keep affect more than just ourselves. And that no matter how far you fall, there is always a chance for forgiveness and redemption.

Jennifer Lindsay began the Guild’s Apprentice course while earning her bachelor’s degree in English and has since completed the Journeyman and Craftsman courses. She works as an editor for a hobby magazine and serves as the youth leader at her church. In 2011 she started The Writer’s Wellspring, a blog to offer encouragement.

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