- Author: Elizabeth Hall
- Performed by Joyce Bean
- Released: November 2016 by Brilliance Audio
- Category: Contemporary, Supernatural
Elise Brooks dreams of a car accident on an icy road. Weeks later, her beloved husband, Michael, is killed in just such a crash. Now, overcome with grief and uncertainty, Elise believes his spirit may be following her in the form of a raven, trying to tell her something from beyond the grave.
Elise is depressed and in mourning after her dream of a car accident involving her husband months earlier which she believed to have been more of a prophecy. Guilt and blame for failing to interpret the dream are added to the swirling mix of emotions as Elise struggles to make sense of her loss. Michael, Elise’s husband, was a Native American wood carver whose work was in high demand, more especially since his death. His last piece was a beautifully detailed carving of a raven.
And so when a raven keeps appearing, seeming to want her attention, Elise can’t shake the belief it’s Michael in spirit form, trying to give her a message. Desperate to understand and keep a connection, however tenuous, to her husband, Elise turns to psychics and Native American culture and folklore for answers. Finding a carved obsidian stone and address in Michael’s jacket, and along with a tarot reading she had, gives Elise the motivation to begin a journey that will take her all the way back to her childhood.
The hair on the back of her neck went up, a feeling as if she were being watched. From the depths of the porch ahead, the tinkling of chimes filled the air. Elise stopped and turned slowly. Her eyes scanned the black silhouettes of the trees surrounding her. They had lost all their depth, nothing but flat black shadows, framed against the darkening blue. She looked back at the studio. Through the window, the black eye of the raven glittered at her.
The mystical atmosphere of the story is very enjoyable, encompassing the Native American wisdom, voodoo and the supernatural which I find fascinating. The characters are varied, very well drawn and believable…from Monica, Elise’s best friend and sister-in-law, to Tom, the sceptic/science geek and Elise’s travelling companion.
Elise and Tom are a great foil for each other. Elise can’t comprehend Tom’s close mindedness and refusal to consider anything that can’t be proved by science. While on the other hand Tom is totally unconvinced by Elise’s arguments, beliefs and what he believes are coincidences.
Elise’s search for answers and her own story, as it plays out towards the end, is quite compelling and completely unexpected. The only negative is the narrative could have been tightened up a little and had less repetition of some points, but other than that I really enjoyed the story and Joyce Bean did a great job.
About Elizabeth Hall
Elizabeth Hall spent most of her life in the mountains of Colorado. She has worked as a teacher and communications consultant, including hosting, writing, and producing the radio show Heart of the West (KRZA, Alamosa) and producing an oral history compilation for the Great Sand Dunes National Park. She now lives in the Pacific NW.