In 40 by Travis Thrasher, readers are confronted with this dilemma: what would you do if an angel visited you and said you were going to die on your next birthday? This is the question Tyler Harrison must answer as he approaches age 40. Tyler is a music producer who parties almost every night and long ago abandoned the faith of his childhood. Now as he is plunged into a series of nightmarish visions and dreams, he is forced to confront the beliefs about heaven and hell that his father once instilled in him. As his 40th birthday approaches, Tyler struggles to know what to believe, wondering why he has been chosen as the recipient of this “gift of knowledge,” as the angel called it.
Though many fiction characters have faced the knowledge of their approaching deaths, Thrasher handles the subject with a fresh voice and approach. Tyler, despite his many flaws, is an appealing and relatable narrator. The story flows easily from one event to the next and at times Thrasher’s choice of words could be described as lyrical, which is appropriate when considering his main character’s profession.
The novel 40 brings to mind the parable of the rich fool from Luke 12. In verse 20 God says to the man, “You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?” As Tyler Harrison faces the reality of this story, readers will be asking themselves what they would do in his place. Thrasher’s 40 presents an engaging, thoughtful look at a man’s last days. I recommend it for anyone who enjoys suspense novels or deep character development. – Ruth Anne Burrell, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com
Nine months shy of hs 40th birthday, freelance music producer Tyler Harrison has started to experience horrific hallucinations. At first, he thinks it’s just the stress of his job, but the hallucinations continue until they culminate at the three-day concert in Chicago, Lollapalloza, which he is covering for work. There he is approached by an older man who tells him that he’s going to die on his fortieth birthday.