Godsent: Exclusive Review and Interview!
It is always a pleasure to pick up a book and enjoy it. It is even better to pick up a book and be sucked into the story so much that you cannot put it down. Frankly, that is what Godsent by Richard Burton was for me. Mr. Burton was kind enough to send us a copy of his book to review recently and we could not have been more excited to do so. Godsent is Richard Burton’s first novel and we really think that it is the start to a promising writing career for him, as well as an avid following by yours truly.
Godsent will probably be compared to the works of Daniel Brown, who authored such religious thrillers like The Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons but I do not think that is a very fair comparison at all. Whereas the three books have one thing in common, the Catholic Church, it is there that the similarities end. Burton takes Godsent in a much different direction from the almost cynical view that Brown has of the Catholic Church and while still using the Vatican as an antagonist, he does so in a way that is not out of left field like Daniel Brown does. In addition, while I am a fan of these books, it always felt like Brown was making factual claims instead of fictional story telling. Not so, for Richard Burton, his writing style is fresh and easygoing. Making the reading of the story not only enjoyable, but captivating as well. For me, the book was part religious thriller, part sci-fi novel, and two parts full blown awesomeness!
While I am not a overly religious person, I found Godsent making me really think about religion and it was the first book in a while that made me want to do side research on my own to check the accuracy of the information. While I did not doubt Burton at all in the specifics, the fictional story in Godsent moved me enough to further my non-fictional knowledge of the information in the story line. There is something to be said about a book making people do that. Not only was the book very entertaining, but it made my wheels turn a bit and that is a testament to the way Burton presents the information in the book.
What I loved about the book is that it begs for a sequel (in the works now) and left me wanting to see how Ethan’s story truely plays out over the next few installments.
Kate Skylar is an ordinary seventeen-year-old girl with an extraordinary destiny. A virgin, Kate suddenly finds herself pregnant with what she believes is the Son of God. Out of all the women in the world, Kate is convinced she has been chosen by God to bear His second son, a boy named Ethan whose life promises to be both tumultuous and enormously challenging . . . provided he can stay alive long enough to realize his true purpose. It won’t be easy. From the instant of his birth, Ethan is hunted by a secret society within the Catholic Church whose sole purpose is to capture or kill him. This group, the Congregation, draws on the matchless computational power of an artificial intelligence called Grand Inquisitor, a top-secret Vatican computer created to analyze the raw data of confessions and other portents from around the globe in order to pinpoint the time and place of the birth of the Antichrist.
As Ethan grows up in anonymity, ignorant of his true identity, he must come to terms with his miraculous abilities and the heavy responsibilities that accompany them. First his family, then his friends, and finally the woman he loves will all be drawn into the ultimate battle of good versus evil. In the process, Ethan’s most deeply held beliefs will be challenged and overturned. Hunted, manipulated and tempted, he will nevertheless find his way to a faith as strong as it is revolutionary and make a fateful choice that will literally determine the future of all mankind.
As for Kate, an equally difficult struggle looms as well as a mother’s devastating choice.
In further proof that Richard Burton might just be the hottest new author around, Godsent was recently picked up for a movie by the producer of the Twilight series, Imprint Entertainment. We think they might know a little something about turning a best seller into a blockbuster and this move puts Richard Burton into heavy company in Hollywood for sure. Another sign of the respect his book is receiving!
We recently had a sit down with Richard Burton for a short and exclusive interview about the book as well as the recent movie deal. We are excited to be able to learn more about Mr. Burton, the book Godsent, and the excitement of Imprint Entertainment getting involved in a movie deal.
WGUB – It is my understanding this is your first book, way to set the bar high! I have to ask, where did the idea for the book come from?
Richard Burton- This is my first novel. And, I am very excited about the movie deal. The concept for Godsent came to me several years ago after watching a news report about a grilled cheese sandwich that people thought had the imprint of the Virgin Mary’s face on it. Hundreds of people flocked to see that sandwich and it dawned on me at that time that the results would be dramatic if people around the world actually believed the Son of God was on Earth in modern time. From that concept, the whole story sprung forth.
WGUB-Clearly this book will be compared to other religious thrillers like The Da Vinci Code or Angels and Demons, was that something you were conscious about when putting together the idea? On the other hand, did you try to separate yourself from those stories?
Richard Burton-I knew when I was writing Godsent that it would inevitably be compared to The Da Vinci Code. But, I also knew that my story was different from that book. Other than the two being action/thrillers and relating to the Catholic Church, the plots are very different. I always believed Godsent would stand on its own.
WGUB-I am a firm believer that there is always a little fact in all fiction. Is there a real Grand Inquisitor or Conversatio that we should know about?
Richard Burton- I am a believer in that too! There was an old Catholic organization known as Conversatio but no Grand Inquisitor that I am aware of. There are a lot of factual events and organizations sprinkled throughout Godsent. My goal was to mix as much fact with fiction as possible.
WGUB-This has some heavy subject matter, considering it centers on the second son. Do you feel like some might be offended by the material?
Richard Burton- Yes, I think Godsent is a bit controversial. Some readers may be surprised or caught off guard by a few of the subplots, and the Catholic Church may be slightly offended. But, I did not want to hold anything back in making the story complete. It is fiction after all and my hope was that people would enjoy “escaping” into a unique and fun story.
WGUB-You seem to have a great feel for the Catholic Church in your writing. Is this due to a religious upbringing?
Richard Burton- I was raised Catholic but had to do a lot of research to ensure I did the story justice. My Catholic upbringing helped a lot. But, I needed to brush up on several concepts.
WGUB-You see many similarities between the book and now. For example, most people that are religious are quick to denounce anyone that comes out as the second coming, often labeling them as crazy. Were you aiming to point out that if there is such an event that the “second son” is likely to be a normal everyday person and not some epic descend from heaven event?
Richard Burton- Yes, I absolutely meant to point that out and believe society would be split in its reaction toward a professed second Son. As a whole, we are a pretty unforgiving and stern population. Our reaction to new or different things can often be harsh. One message of the book is for all of us to take a step back and challenge ourselves to think about and analyze new situations before quickly denouncing them.
WGUB-Big news that your first book got picked up Imprint Entertainment. They have been responsible for a moderately popular franchise, “Twilight” that is some heavy company to be in. Describe how that has been for you?
Richard Burton- Having Godsent picked up for a movie by the production company behind the Twilight Saga has been amazing. Surprisingly, that was actually the easiest part of the whole “book” process. Once the creative team at Imprint Entertainment read the book, they fell in love with it and contacted me immediately. The deal was consummated quickly thereafter. On the other hand, getting the book published was 4 years in the making!
WGUB-Any thoughts on who would play Ethan? Robert Pattinson or Taylor Lautner?
Richard Burton- To be honest, I have not come up with a good choice for an actor to embody Ethan. But, I would love Anthony Hopkins to play Papa Jim!
WGUB-What kind of input are you going to have on the movie? Clearly, you hope that your vision for the book is put up correctly on the screen.
Richard Burton- That is a difficult part for an original author – – especially a first time author like me. I had to sell my rights in the movie. Although I will remain with the project as a consultant throughout, I will not have absolute control over the creative direction of the movie. Nonetheless, I certainly hope the movie stays committed to the core story and message of Godsent.
WGUB-Clearly, you have some pressure now to follow up on Godsent. Any plans for a second book. If so, do you see yourself going in another direction?
Richard Burton- The pressure is definitely on for a second book and I am hard at work to a follow-up story to Godsent. The way Godsent ends provides a great launching pad to the next “chapter” in the saga. I am excited to see where that story pulls me.
For more information on Godsent and Richard Burton you can check out the book’s website. We strongly recommend this book to all our followers and would love to hit you with a copy of it so you can see for yourself just how good Richard Burton’s writing is. If you are interested in a free copy simplypost a comment below and we will be choosing one lucky winner by the end of the week! For those of you unlucky enough to not win, pick up a copy today!
–Richard Burton grew up in New York State as one of six children. An avid reader and creative writer, Mr. Burton’s debut work of fiction is both controversial and compelling. Upon graduation from law school, Mr. Burton moved to Dallas, Texas where he currently resides. An accomplished attorney, he specializes in corporate law and commercial litigation. In his leisure time, Mr. Burton enjoys playing competitive tennis, working out, enjoying the outdoors and spending time with his family and friends. He is an avid dog lover and has a very energetic German Shepherd. Mr. Burton is hard at work creating his follow-up story to Godsent.