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Monday, February 27, 2012

33 A.D. (Bachyir, Book 1) by David McAfee

*Giveaway Bonus*

The giveaway contest is closed! The winner of the signed, print copy of 33 A.D. is Lane Mahnke. 

I hope you enjoy the review and check the book out.


When former Enforcer Ephraim breaks the laws of his people to follow another, the Council sends Theron after him - not only to kill Ephraim, since the Bachyir don't believe in mercy when it comes to betrayals, but to figure out who could have made an Enforcer as loyal as Ephraim stop working for them.

After a fairly quick massacre, Theron reports back to the Council that Jesus of Nazareth was the one who Ephraim betrayed them for. Just as Theron expected, the Council orders him to take Jesus out. However, when Theron goes to the Garden of Gethsemane, he learns the task won't be as easy as he thought. The glow of faith around Jesus is so strong that he can't even get close to him. Plus, Jesus has hundreds of followers. To fully satisfy the Council, he'll have to put a lot more thought into how he'll murder Jesus.

Meanwhile, the bodies of the two guards Theron recklessly murdered on his way to report back to the Council about Ephraim has the city in a stir. The guard he beheaded, Didius, turns out to be the beloved brother of Marcus, the intelligent and powerful centurion who works right under Pontius Pilate. Pilate's order to take out the murderer who killed the guards becomes much more personal.

33 A.D. has multiple sub-plots and POV switches. Taras, Marcus's best friend and a secret assassin who is just a regular legionary (soldier) as far as everyone else knows, is determined to marry Mary, even though a Jewish woman is not allowed to marry a Roman man and her father hates him. But, before Taras can really consider starting a new life with Mary, he wants to show his loyalty to Rome one last time by helping Marcus uncover and hunt down the murderer of Didius. Taras was probably my most favorite character of this story with Marcus following closely behind.

Marcus and Taras are convinced that Theron is a follower of Jesus and that Jesus played a part in the murders, so, just like that, Jesus ends up being hunted by both Theron and Marcus. Theron's purpose is to brutally take out Jesus for the Council and make it look like zealots did it, as well as take out anyone that Jesus may have revealed the vampire secret to.

Basically, there is a lot going on.

There are four parts. At the beginning of part four, I was a bit nervous that all of the sub-plots would become too much, but I don't think they overwhelmed the author and they didn't overwhelm me. I feel like everything was tied up and handled as they should have been. For a story dealing with something as intense as the massacre of Jesus (albeit before they knew just how powerful Jesus could be), I liked the feeling of the plot also being large and intense to compensate.

If anything, Theron has a knack for killing the wrong character at the wrong time, and this story is definitely a tragedy with a large death count. Theron was perhaps my least favorite character - not so much because he is a bad guy who is ruthless about killing, but because, in spite of how intelligent and powerful he seemed, he was also rather reckless. Like in most tragedy stories, most of his undoing was unknowingly at his own hands.

Overall, I liked the story and would recommend it to anyone who has grown tired of flowery vampires. Plus, it has vampires trying to take out Jesus. I mean, come on, something that crazy and unexpected is too interesting to pass up.

Author David McAfee

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Author David.A.Foyle

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Vampires plotting the death of Jesus and anyone whom he may revealed their secrets as well. I would love to read this book and then write a review of my own as this one is a bit unclear and rambling (sorry to the reviewer). Not to be too critical but the review does not leave the reader clear on the antagonists verses the main characters nor the central theme of the book. Are the vampires to be hated or revered or something in between. The character who are named are equally ambiguous. There seems to be a Romeo/Juliet type love story in the midst of the story, but again, should we root for them, hate them or waiver between. I hope the writer will send me her latest draft and I would be happy to write a more concise and clear review.
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Thanks for your evaluation of my review. In the future, I suppose I'll try to make my reviews a little bit more like book reports, I guess. Since this is a blog post, and my reviews are more me stating my opinion on the book than anything else, I don't think it's too big a deal that the review rambled. I often cover a general summary about the plot, what I liked, what I didn't like, and if I'd recommend it. Beside that, there's no focused formula to my reviews, since I don't want them to come across as guides to how other readers should feel about the plot or a book report. It isn't like what a formal magazine or newspaper book review would be like.

But thanks for your advice. I'll consider it in the future. ^_^

Lane Mahnke

I like that there are changes in POV in this movie. I'm also very interested in the whole Jesus being blamed as a murderer aspect to it. I would love to read this big and give a more in depth review of it.


I personally did not find any fault with your review. Some people expect a book review to be a Cliff Notes version of a book, with the end result being no need to read the book because the story has been spoiled by an "in depth" review. As for the story, it seems like it could be complicated to follow, but I will take your word that the story flows smoothly enough along where the reader will not get lost in names, dates and locations and will instead be able to recall them as the story progresses. I recently finished reading two separate history books and both were very hard to follow, particularly in the pre-biblical era because of the massive amount of information crammed into a 300 page book. The plot certainly seems unique, and that makes it more intriguing because of the complexity of threading the Jesus needle of telling a story without disrespecting the historical aspects of the events that are said to have taken place.

Mistee Dawn

I personally found no fault with your review either. Some people just like to complain, I guess. lol. Anyway, I love the premise of this book. I've been into a vampire book phase for awhile, but this sounds like so much more. Thanks for the opportunity.

misteedawnw at