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Shepherds of Destiny by Kiel Barnekov Lacks Focus and Is Overly Preachy

Updated on October 15, 2021
cover of book
cover of book | Source

This Book Was A Chore To Read

The book starts as a mildly interesting speculative fiction book about cyborgs, brain surgery, and debilitating diseases. However, it soon falls into a preachy religious fantasy when the main character has his brain removed and put in a pickle jar called a cube. A figure called the guardian tells Kristian, the wealthy billionaire, that he must assassinate stonewall Jackson to save America from being defeated in World War II. Then, another character named Aaron takes the role of the king of England during world war 2 to tell Winston Churchill that he supports going to war with Hitler’s Germany.

There is no real antagonist, just the vague “forces of evil” like something from a bad children’s cartoon. I much preferred the earlier science about downloading human brains into cyborg bodies which, while mostly poorly explained, is still more interesting than other aspects of the book. Star Trek is referenced in the book, which again reminds me that this book seems to be a hodgepodge of bad Star Trek episodes. In the book, even after we meet a literal angel, it tries to be a science fiction book still having cyborgs space travel and helping severely disabled people being put into synthetic bodies, but nothing interesting is done with these scientific elements. The being called “Guardian” also watches Kristian and his wife have sex several times, which comes across as creepy.

Then we also get a surrogate “Skynet” evil corporation that wants to control everyone through their phones. Also, it further devolves into conservatives who are all good and liberals all bad communists who want to rule the world. And said evil corporation and anyone, not an American conservative, are all part of the same evil plot.

If the book focused on speculative fiction, it would have been a better but still boring book as it is written as rather dull, with no drama, romance, or chemistry, no spice of life. Mixing genres often doesn’t end well and is so in this case, it would be much better and simpler to choose one genre to make a better story rather than mix several and make an unfocused dull story.

The book ends with not a roar but a whimper; the guardian gives the protagonist the body of the evil corporation lady. And then he makes her stop her evil plan, then the cliché ending of its not over yet. It is as anticlimactic and boring as the rest of the book; it needs more drama, not dull dialogues between all the characters. Lastly, the book had a few grammatical errors here and there but was not too bad for the most part, at least grammatically.


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