Review: Salvation Day by RD Meyer

★★★★ Salvation Day by RD Meyer

Mike Faulkner has just attended the second funeral he never thought he’d have to experience: first, his daughter Samantha, taken far too young, and now his wife, who has taken her own life from grief.

Mike is more than a grieving father, and more than a fresh widower – he’s emotionally detached, yet intellectually brilliant. Currently, he is working as part of the team on the verge of a groundbreaking discovery that could revolutionize energy production forever, and his family tragedy will soon affect his work dramatically.

Despite his colleagues’ hesitance, Mike’s pain becomes fuel for his work, spurred forward by haunting dreams and the voice of something that Mike begins to open up to… a voice telling him that his research has the potential to exact his will on God himself for the tragedies that have befallen him. As Mike looks deeper, the question soon shifts from whether he could, to merely if he should.

In Salvation Day, RD Meyer combines emotional and religious conflicts with a gripping science-fiction plotline. Much like his vampire novel, Akeldama, this novel is a unique take on previously-explored ideas, mixing in some intriguing new concepts and examining the issues raised from a number of different angles. Good science fiction has you questioning the very nature of reality, and this novel makes good on the potential of its bold and controversial premise.

Protagonist Mike is logical to a fault, causing him to consider and reconsider every moment regarding his ultimate plan to kill a God who forsakes so many. It’s a risky idea for a novel, to be sure, but Meyer conveys this compelling storyline with much sensitivity and finesse. This is achieved through the strength of Mike’s character, who is the portrait of a man wrought with turmoil about his personal misfortunes and the ways in which his ultimate plan might be for the benefit of all, or prove ultimately to have no impact on human events.

All of this combines to make a captivating multilayered character, and a story filled with profound implications. Mike churns over every detail of his plan in a way that is truly relatable. Anyone who has suffered loss close to that of Mike can understand his motivation, which is at once well-reasoned, and absolutely, obsessively crazed. Meyer’s writing deftly unpacks this complex story, which offers a fascinating portrait and scenario wherever you fall on the ideological divide.

While Salvation Day is certainly a dark look into one man’s personal hell, it is also mixed with a surprising degree of hope, and this element gives the novel an extra layer of depth, where it could have descended into a novel that sides too much with one perspective. Meyer once again exhibits an ability to tell a grim tale with measured finesse, and with much more emotional heartbreak at its core than his previous work, proving Meyer to be a bright up-and-coming author in modern science fiction and fantasy, and making Salvation Day a uniquely engrossing and thought-provoking read.

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Salvation Day