Tom Pawlik Vanish

ISBN 13: 9781414318936

Vanish

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2009 Christy Award winner!
Three strangers each encounter the same mysterious storm and awake the next day to find that everyone else has vanished. There's Conner Hayden, a successful but unscrupulous trial lawyer who has forsaken his family for his career; Helen Krause, a middle-aged model struggling to come to grips with her fading beauty; and Mitch Kent, an enterprising young mechanic unable to escape a past that still haunts him. Afraid and desperate for answers, their paths eventually cross and they discover they are being watched. Elusive and obscured in shadows, the “observers” are apparently forcing them to relive vivid hallucinations of events from their past. They discover a mute homeless boy in tattered clothing and believe he may hold the key to the mystery, but the “observers” soon become aggressive and the four are forced to flee. When the boy disappears, the four decide to head from Chicago to Washington, D.C., in search of answers...and more survivors. Winner of the 2006 operation first novel contest, Vanish is a nonstop suspense thriller in the vein of Ted Dekker.

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From Publishers Weekly:

In Pawlik's debut novel of inspirational suspense, two men and one woman wake up one morning to find that every other human being on the planet seems to have disappeared. (Yes, one character even uses that tell-tale phrase "left behind.") The three survivors hallucinate and sense they are being watched. But by whom? Protagonists Mitch, Conner and Helen not only struggle to survive physically, but find themselves pondering vivid memories and grappling with issues from the past. Helen, for example, regrets certain choices she made in her personal life years ago, and Mitch ponders unresolved issues with his parents. Conner mourns his dead son and failed marriage, and tries to cope with the fact that his ex-wife and daughter have become evangelical Christians. The circumstances of his survival prompt him to wrestle with questions of belief. Resolution and even redemption come for some of the heroes, but the prose is flat and the character development is thin enough that readers will have a hard time caring.
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