Publication Date: August 4, 2015
In Seeing Evil by Jason Parent, major crimes detective, Samantha Reilly, was key on the scene of the murder of little Michael Turcotte’s parents. Eleven years later she’s still close with the young victim when a vicious attack at school triggers visions. Seeing what happens still leaves a lot to be deciphered. Will Michael be able to decipher his strange visions in time to protect himself from the evil to come?
The author, Jason Parent, sent me a copy of this book in exchange for my review.
Jason Parent is a brave author. He writes subjects, many of us might not want to contemplate, with a beautifully sympathetic realism. We see the initial crime through Reilly’s eyes and it is brutal. Samantha and her team debate what to do with a 3-year-old who doesn’t seem to fully understand what has happened to his parents and yet still seems to be in a state of shock. The lyricism of the scene adds to the poignancy of the emotional scarring and loss to this child that had this reader tearing up.
When we meet Michael eleven years later, he’s crouched on a toilet in the boy’s washroom trying to evade vicious bullies, and witnesses the brutal attack of another boy. The aftermath of the attack is heart-stopping and sad. It fits perfectly within the narrative so that the pacing of this horrible event allows the reader to stay engrossed in the story without the need for pause.
The characters are well fleshed out. Parent introduces us to the cast and then allows them to evolve within the story. Let’s face it, Michael may have only been three years old, but through the events of the day, he met Samantha who forms him as a teenager. They may not be in constant contact but that day bonded them in an unbreakable way. If you’re not a fan of thrillers, Seeing Evil is a novel not to miss simply for the relationships it contains and he genuine, feeling connections that radiate from the bond of the main characters to the background characters. Everyone we meet, we get to know on a practical level.
When Michael begins to see the future, exploitation is inevitable. Michael must use his intuition and instinct to know when to protect himself. As a loner, he has a somewhat stunted social experience, but the people out to use him are clever and even savvy readers may be unsure as to their motives. The brilliance of Parent’s style is that everything has the potential to go in a direction we might not expect. Jason Parent does not shortchange readers on the emotional impact of this ability on the young man. It is unwanted and worse, sometimes traumatizing to a young person that has already seemed and experienced more than he should.
If there are technical flaws in Seeing Evil, I did not notice them. The pacing was fast, the narrative smooth, the story interesting and the characters easy to like and cheer for. There comes a time when a character has experienced so much you want better for them and Michael is that character in Seeing Evil.
Ultimately, Parent gives readers a thrilling treat with surprising charm.
If you’re looking for a full emotional experience work of fiction for the weekend, pick up Seeing Evil by Jason Parent today on