Today, there are many books written with the name of that historical evil Adolf Hitler somewhere in their pages. Though I love myself some good WW2 novels, I’m not always up to reading them. So, when an author like David J. Castello comes along and whips something up that I haven’t seen before in a WW2 novel, I’m always game to read it. I must tell you, however, that Castello’s novel The Diary of an Immortal (1945 – 1959) is not a WW2 novel, despite my original assumption that it was when I started this reading journey. Frankly, it’s something else.
Meet immortal Buddhist monks. Travel to Tibet. Undergo immortality and a variety of other superpowers.
By the time the war in Germany came to its inevitable conclusion, a twenty-one-year-old American army medic named Steven Ronson had seen his fair share of corpses. The war would change his life forever because it is there in Germany that he would stumble upon a scientific breakthrough that is unknown to the world. Pills meant to ensure Hitler a long reign were now in Steven’s hands. It is after his return to America that he learns that the pills don’t just have the ability to prolong someone’s life, but that other sorcerous gifts come with it.
Hitler’s evil might’ve come to an end in Germany, but somewhere in Asia, another evil is brewing and his name is Chang Sou. So my trip into World War Two Germany wasn’t long, but even so, from the stuff that the author made me visualize with those detailed descriptions of his I felt like a soldier in a continues nightmare. Steven soon returns to America where his romance with a woman named Kate is cut short, tragedy strikes, and playing jazz leads him to a world of immortal men like himself and otherworldy powers.
I couldn’t help but feel for Steve, or “Doc” as he was called by his war mates during the war. He had seen things during the war that no man can see up close and still remain the same afterwards. These things that Steven sees ultimately drives him toward taking those pills. But there is something that doesn’t sit right with me about Steve’s “reason” for taking these pills in the first place. He is tired of death. He takes pills to become immortal. This means that he will be seeing death for a long time still to come.
It turns out that Steven, armed with his alto saxophone, can emulate trancendental tunes that can make a big player in the music scene see visions of making big bucks. Steven’s alto saxophone playing makes him conjure up visions and while he plays, he doesn’t even know what he’s doing. So, when a character named Albert made his first appearance, I could finally find out more about Steven and those magical pills he’s been taking. The joys of reading any good fantasy novel only get better from here as Steven eventually learns everything he needs to know.
As the novel unfolded there had been some surprising developments that I could not have seen coming. I liked the down moment in the romance that was going on between Steven and Albert’s niece Jennifer. What I liked even more is the jaw-dropping moment when the evil immortal Chang Sou revealed something interesting about her. David J. Castello has written an extremely exciting novel showcasing magic that one doesn’t encounter often in a fantasy novel. I recommend it to fans of novels set in Asia. Meet immortal Buddhist monks. Travel to Tibet. Undergo immortality and a variety of other superpowers.
I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Date Published: October, 2016