Men, Djinn & Angels – Entered in 2018 Book Award Contest
Anton D. Morris
Men, Djinn & Angels: Awakening by Anton D. Morris tells the story of a young Palestinian man named Talib as he sets out on a mission to Cairo, Egypt. Talib is hoping to dedicate himself to the cause of Palestinian freedom, along the way he meets a man named Theodore. Theodore introduces Talib to a world filled supernatural beings and conspiracies.
Men, Djinn & Angels: Awakening is a meticulously plotted novel. Where this book falls short is in the portrayal of its characters, specifically Talib, Fiona, and Kate. The reader is given no reason to emotionally connect with Talib until halfway through the novel. This is too late. Kate and Fiona, while integral to the plot, remain two-dimensional devices through which the reader learns about Talib’s past and the greater conspiracy at work in the novel. One way to counter this would be introduce more conflict into the story. Most of the story is told through Talib’s dreams and visions, as such there is very little active conflict brewing throughout the novel. Introducing some current conflicts for Talib and the sisters to grapple with would help the reader to better connect to the characters and give a reason to care about what they are going through.
Where Men, Djinn, & Angels: Awakening really shines is in the worldbuilding. Morris thoroughly researched numerous historical events and movements when crafting this story, and it shows. The inclusion of references to so many historical moments helps in the creation of a vast conspiracy that is the basis for much of Talib’s current situation. The rich tapestry of historical events and world mythologies that Morris weaves is really something to behold. Men, Djinn, & Angels: Awakening is an intriguing beginning to what may prove to be a well-thought out, meticulously crafted, fictional commentary on modern society.
Originally critiqued by a member of the Authors Talk About It team.