The Bottom Line: An intensely imaginative, evocative and visionary work of metaphysical fiction.
As the third book in The Vessels series opens, former Pittsburgh detective Tal Davis grieves her former partner Jake and recalls what it was like to be alive before she became a spirit. “Even eternity took a minute to get used to,” she muses just before transporting to a place where she can see and hear Vessels program colleagues Sam, Gale and Doc, as well as former boss Chief Demmings.
And just as Tal is beginning to get her bearings, fellow spirit Liam appears and tells her to get ready for what comes next. A bit later, Liam tells her there’s one thing she must do before becoming a full Spirit Guard – forgive a mortal enemy.
Meanwhile, an especially vengeful spirit named Eric chooses Governor Ron Galt as his vessel. Ron is quickly tattooed, and before he’s even allowed to put his socks and shoes on, Eric begins using him to execute his revenge. While Ron finds his newfound powers intoxicating, he’s headed for conflicting emotions as Eric’s hatred grows.
As in the first two series books, author Anna M. Elias deftly juggles a large cast of characters of vessels and spirits alike. Told from alternating points of view, reading the books in order is absolutely required in order to fully appreciate the individual stories of Tal, Avani, Sam, Ron, Malina and others. But as their collective narratives gradually fuse into a singular plot in Book 3, the genius of Elias’ vision is clear. The foundational concept of vessels and spirit partnership created in Books 1 and 2 is clearly a repeatable formula for suspense and emotional drama. Readers who have been following these characters’ individual journeys will find that Elias has taken great care to ensure their journeys are satisfying.
Highly recommended for series fans.