Title: Valley of Time: The Greatest Journey Ever Taken by Jeremy D Holden
Genre: Currently #4105 on Amazon Best Sellers Rank in Kindle eBooks, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Mystery, International Mystery & Crime
Publisher: Clean Publishing
Publication Date: November 5, 2017
Source: Smith Publishing, Cleaning Publishing, and NetGalley
Title and Cover: Valley of Time – Ethereal cover offers hints of subject
I can’t keep smacking my forehead with the palm of my hand and asking “What is this guy thinking??! Surely someone as smart as Mal couldn’t be this gullible twice?!
Is Valley of Time presenting much the same scenario as was posed in his first book offering, Sea of Doubt in which he barely escaped with his life? Much of the first half of this book is uncomfortably close. He has written about those experiences attaching threads to this sequel.
Valley of Time presents Mal Thomas with an interesting proposition–one at first blush would look like he has no choice. Mal is still in touch with the creative team he forged at CREATIF, his former promotional marketing leader the world over. Having retired in some financial comfort to his home in the Blue Ridge Mountains, he is now temporarily apart from his beloved wife, Mara, who is off this continent on an important mission of her own.
Billionaire Huw Hudson wants to insulate his company, Space Rider, against a possible UFO sighting that may damage his position as an unfolding leader in commercial space tourism. Mal stipulates that he must investigate the UFO sighting in South Africa before he will commit to joining Hudson in a protracted marketing effort after which he contacts his former cohorts and together they brain storm findings and formulate a possible plan to cloak and promote Hudson’s company.
The characters from his first novel are back, unchanged, skeptical, and it takes some doing on Mal’s part to bring them to the “light” side. Del is her usual profane self, well developed in the former novel, not so much this one. Mal is confronted by his friend at the FBI. In an effort to appease not only himself, but also the FBI, government, co-workers, and his wife, he begins a globe-hopping odyssey to see for himself up close and personal that which Hudson has privately divulged to him.
No, the man isn’t selling the second coming this time, but is absolutely brilliant in putting together with his team a very successful campaign. As I mentioned before, he’s capable of selling ice to an Eskimo. He has a far-reaching knowledge of technological advances. (Holden discusses in this book synchronized programmed drones, much as we just witnessed in the Olympics.) And, yes, there is a twist–a stunner–though not nearly as dark as the first novel. It’s the conspiracy behind the up-front plot.
I love that he radiates devotion to his wife and defers so easily to her. They make important decisions together, always thoughtful of their children and the possible repercussions to their family dynamic. If I had a problem, it was that he was so easily “sold” on Hudson’s hidden agenda, which is a douzy. I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop. (After all, I read the first book.)
Certainly no excessive dialogue, Holden tends to more telling than showing. But he does have an amazing way of presenting arguments and scientific terminology in easily understandable language. While it may be possible this novel could function as a stand alone, reading the first, however, would go a long way to explaining the whole function of the CREATIF team members. The plot is well crafted and laid out in clearly digestible style with heavy swoops into sci-fi. Having expected the other shoe though, and getting none (what you see is what you get), I felt a little let-down by the climax. Additionally, I bumped into a number of edit misses, errors, and typos.
I received a request from Smith Publishing and downloaded from Clean Publishing and NetGalley and appreciated the opportunity to read and review. Recommended for any who enjoy the creation of a well-designed marketing plan, sci-fi, and international mystery.
Rosepoint Publishing: Four of Five Stars
The Author: (From Amazon Author page) Jeremy Holden is an award-winning creative professional and accomplished author with ties to both sides of the Atlantic. He received a degree in graphic design from Ravensbourne College and studied law at the University of the West of England, giving him a distinctive right- and left-brain approach to business and life, including his writing. In 1995, Jeremy moved to the United States, where he met his wife, Natalie, and became a citizen.
Jeremy has worked for some of the best known advertising agencies in the world, including Publicis Worldwide, where he was responsible for strategy for the New York office. During his tenure in the industry, he has earned many of the industry’s top honors, including the prestigious “Gold Effie,” the advertising industry’s Golden Globe.
Jeremy has counseled some of the world’s most recognized names and brands, including Citigroup, Proctor & Gamble, Audi of America, Nasdaq, and many others. His experiences are integrated into, and integral to, Sea of Doubt and his upcoming novel Valley of Time. You can find out more about his books at jeremydholden.com.
Jeremy’s first nonfiction book, Second That Emotion: How Decisions, Trends, and Movements Are Shaped (Prometheus Books, 2012), explores how movements are created in the political, cultural, and commercial realms. The book received wide-ranging media coverage including Fast Company, The Huffington Post, CNN, and NPR.
Jeremy currently lives and works in Raleigh, North Carolina, where he runs Clean, an integrated branding agency with his partners, Natalie and Scott. He also teaches at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the School of Media and Journalism. A popular speaker and facilitator, Jeremy has run workshops with fellow authors Malcolm Gladwell and Professor Dan Ariely.
Jeremy is father to two overachieving children, Lily and Sam, and enjoys spoiling his dogs, Stella and Wally. ©2018 V Williams