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Reviewed by Karen Pirnot for Readers' Favorite
Visibly Struck by author Steve Kubicek is an interesting study of one man's near obsession with the history of George Washington as it relates to Washington's career in the military and as a founding father. The story features Stephen "Spitz" Spitzen, the grandfather of Aspen Spitzen. All was well until Spitz's only son and his daughter-in-law met a fiery death in a plane accident. Spitz immediately became angry and filled with rage that God would do such a thing to him and his granddaughter Aspen. Spitz had researched the life and times of General/President Washington for years and was now a disbeliever that God had played an invisible hand in the formation of the United States of America. When Spitz is struck down by a stroke and ends up in a comatose state, he travels back in time and sees first-hand the kind of man that helped to form the nation. He is present with Washington in his move through military ranks and then, as the first President of the new nation. He gains insight as to the intent of Washington's letters and he then ponders the true role of God in the formation of the new nation.
There is considerable research in Visibly Struck and Kubicek has obviously grounded his tale on Washington's own writings, making the novel somewhat factually-based. I did find the character development a bit lacking as I had hoped that more of Spitz's true and agonizing transition would be revealed. However, Kubicek does take Biblical scriptures and juxtaposes them to the chronology of events leading to the birth of the United States; this in itself leads to a fascinating weaving of history, belief and happenstance. Skeptics may not be totally convinced but believers will feel a sense of validation from the novel.