Healers

A Novel

Fiction - Horror
202 Pages
Reviewed on 05/31/2021
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Author Biography

I'm a veterinarian from Charlotte, North Carolina. I have numerous short stories published, but HEALERS is my first novel. HEALERS, while dark, is essentially about hope. Suicide is unfortunately very common and a huge issue in my profession as a veterinarian. HEALERS was written as a way for me to process what so many of us deal with - living with a tremendous amount of guilt and trying to live life while learning the most important lesson of them all - sometimes you have to learn to forgive yourself.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Grant Leishman for Readers' Favorite

Healers: A Novel by Brooke Reynolds is an enchanting, surprise dive into an urban fantasy world that both delights and shocks readers on a number of levels. Dr. Scott Weaver is an experienced and highly talented trauma surgeon who also has aspects of the “God Complex” in his psyche and is tormented by the demon of drink. One evening, when he did not expect to be called in, he reports for surgery while drunk, makes a fatal error on a gunshot wound, and loses his patient. Refusing to lie to the investigating board, Scott is suspended and then deregistered as a doctor. Bereft and alone with only alcohol and drugs as his solace, Scott chooses suicide as the way out and blows out his brains. He wakes to find himself back in Blister City in his own personal purgatory, given a second chance to make a difference as a “healer”. With his healing powers, Scott could do great work but instead, he chooses the seedy, run-down, nightlife of Blister City as his habitat and wastes his healing powers for a full seven years. Sent a talking dog, Malakai, with attitude, to bring him to his senses and remind him of the short time left to redeem himself, Scott and Malakai set out to “heal” as many of the good citizens of Blister City before he is recalled and a final decision made as to his disposition.

Healers: A Novel took me completely by surprise. Author Brooke Reynolds has created a dark, violent, seedy, “noir” to match the grittiest crime novels and yet there is a whimsical, passionate, and romantic side to the tale that shines through the filth and the crud. For a debut novel, the author has struck exactly the right tone in her narrative. I particularly loved the interactions between Scott and Malakai that invariably drew out the best humanist responses from Scott. Admittedly, the talking dog was a shock but it was beautifully done and lifted this novel well above its competitors in the genre. I also appreciated the two sides of Dr. Scott Weaver, the cynic who hated himself versus the humanitarian nature that had first driven him to medicine and the power to heal. The passionate and deep relationships that Scott formed with Barry, Ginger, Nancy, Layla, and even Malakai show the true, caring nature of a man who had truly gone off the rails but never completely lost himself and that just earns this author much more credit. Brooke Reynolds has a style that takes you deep inside the minds of the participants and you truly feel invested in the actions and the outcomes. This was one book I absolutely didn’t want to end, so if I had one complaint, it was too short. I can highly recommend it and look forward to the next offering from this talented author.

Tanja Jurkovic

Healers by Brooke Reynolds follows Scott Weaver, a former surgeon, who, after committing suicide, ends up in purgatory. His life might be over, but his torment and reconciliation with his former self and the mistakes he's made during his lifetime continue in the most unexpected ways. Returned back to earth to heal those in need in the corrupt and dangerous Blister City, after Scott failed to heal a friend, he starts to doubt his journey to forgiveness. Completely disappointed, he succumbs to debauchery, excessive alcoholism, and a "don't care" attitude, neglecting his most important mission - healing. A higher force sends Scott a companion named Malakai, in a form of a dog, to help him get back on track and eventually cross over.

Healers is an exciting horror novel with supernatural elements. The atmosphere and the story of Healers send shivers down your spine. Brooke Reynolds skillfully describes the grittiness of human behavior and the duality of human nature, which Scott has to fight in order to save lives and himself in the end. I really enjoyed reading this debut novel, which kept me on the edge of my seat all the time. Humorous exchanges between Scott and Malakai throughout the novel put such a refreshing take on their strange relationship, which turns into friendship... whether they like it or not. Healers is a rollercoaster of exciting twists and turns, dark yet extremely lovable main characters, even darker humor to spice things up, and a message about life that we all need to hear.

Anne-Marie Reynolds

Healers: A Novel by Brooke Reynolds is a spooky horror story. Dr. Scott Weaver loses a patient on the operating table and commits suicide. When he wakes, he is stuck in hell, a place he can only leave if he agrees to be a healer. His job is to save everyone in Blister City, an incredibly corrupt city. He fails to save an old friend and, wallowing in grief, finds himself sinking into the darkness. Unable to leave his own personal hell, Scott is given a canine companion from above. Malakai leads Scott toward the light but, after another failure, he seriously doubts his own abilities. He is faced with a choice that could crucify him – save one last person and leave his hell behind, or save thousands of souls by condemning himself. Which path will Scott take?

Healers: A Novel by Brooke Reynolds is a gripping tale centered around what saving lives truly means. The main protagonist is an interesting character; not such a nice person in real life but with a gift for healing and, in death, a man trying to save his own soul. It is a fast-paced story, and, although it is a horror story, it also has a touch of humor to it. It’s a story of hope, of redemption, and of making the right choice when those around you are relying on you. It is a page-turner, each chapter keeping you guessing in this twisty, dark tale with plenty of action. Beware – it does have some violence and sexual scenes but they totally fit with the story. Great for fans of the supernatural or horror genres; this is one book you won't be able to put down.