The Possession (The Anomaly Files 2) by Michael Rutger

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Stars: 5 out of 5.

I loved The Anomaly, the first book in the series, and this one was just as good. Yes, the story ended up being a little bit out there, but the cast of characters more than compensates for that.

Yes, the characters are the strongest part of this book and this series in general. I love Nolan, and Ken, and Molly, and Pierre. They feel like real people, but more importantly, they read like real friends and even found family to each other. Their interactions are genuine, and you can see that even when they are making fun of each other, there is a deep affection behind the jokes as well. And when push comes to shove, they don’t hesitate to do anything they can to save and protect each other.

Kristi, on the other hand, I could care less about. In the previous book Nolan painted this picture of her as someone brilliant, much better at this journalist thing than he is. He made it sound like she was really good with people and had lots of friends and seemed like a nice person. Well, the reality we see in this book couldn’t be farther from that picture. Kristi comes across as self-centered and unwilling to listen to anyone else’s opinion. She does things without thinking them through and sometimes even when she knows that her actions will only make things worse. She also comes across as very judgmental of others while at the same time blind to her own shortcomings. Needless to say, I wasn’t sad to see her go away at the end of the book. 

And I think this particular characterization was intentional on the author’s part. I think he wanted to show that sometimes our love blinds us to the shortcomings of the people closest to us even when those people hurt us. Nolan spent most of the previous book regretting what happened between him and Kristi and wishing they could find a way of mending this broken relationship. I think he got the much needed closure in this book, even if it wasn’t the one he was hoping for. 

The story itself was intriguing and even horrifying in a rather mind-bending kind of way. I love how the author takes a real world mystery, like the walls found all over the United States. Nobody knows who built them or when, or even what purpose they are supposed to serve. And then the author builds this elaborate story around that one real fact. And honestly, his explanation isn’t any more farfetched than a lot of other conspiracy theories out there.

All in all, this was an enjoyable book, and I wouldn’t mind following Nolan and crew for another adventure if the author ever decides to continue this series.

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