Today marks the official kickoff of the The Faith Machine Book Tour presented by Storytellers On Tour, and we’ve got a great lineup helping us spotlight this incredible Psychic Science Fiction Thriller. The Faith Machine is the first installment of Tone Milazzo’s ESPionage series, a brisk, action-packed tale with noir flavors. This story was a lot different from what I normally read, but I’m so glad I was given the chance to give this one a go. I thoroughly enjoyed this unusual tale of unlikely heroes.
We’ve enlisted the help of a group of wonderful and talented bloggers and Bookstagrammers to help us celebrate the release of the The Faith Machine. This is what we have going on, so make sure to check out each and everyone one throughout the week for some brilliant content, including reviews, spotlights, and more.
MAY 31ST–THE WELCOMING
Whispers & Wonder
On the Book Shelf
OllieSpot SFF Book Review
Fantasy Book Critic
That Guy Reading
Before We Go Blog
The Grimoire Reliquary
JUNE 6TH–THE ENCORE
For more about this tour visit Storytellers On Tour.
Welcome to the dangerous, clandestine world of ESPionage. Welcome to The Strip, where operatives on the fringe command teams of ‘Cards’: Agents cursed with subtle, specialized, and sometimes sloppy psychic powers. Dr Ken Park, Korean-American psychologist and spy, dares to lead six of these Cards. Together, they tackle esoteric threats the Department of Homeland Security cannot.
Park takes his team to Africa to retrieve the Faith Machine. Built by the Soviets to turn prayers into suffering, the psychotronic device fell into the hands of a demented warlord. Tragically, the mission fails and the madman slaughters hundreds of innocents while the machine burns.
They return to the States in disgrace, and into an ambush by the mysterious and brutal Casemen. Cut off from command and each other, the scattered agents rush to their safe house in the west. While spy agencies from around the world want retribution for the catastrophe in Africa. Park’s team outplays enemies left and right, while uncovering the true threat. There’s another Faith Machine, one destined to bring hell on earth.
What Reviewers Are Saying
“This one’s a whole lot of dangerous fun.” – Jonathan Maberry
“A captivating adventure jammed with characters who, though troubled, try to do the right thing.” – Kirkus Reviews
“If you’re in the mood for some fun, paranormally driven thriller spy-type action, check this book out. It’s a great read. ” – Chad A. Clark, GNHorror
ALSO REVIEWED AT: Goodreads
“I’ve known men who wanted to be gods on earth, and a god who wanted to be a man. One would think someone, somewhere would be happy with their station in life.”
The Faith Machine is author Tone Milazzo’s provocative delve into the realm of Psychic Science Fiction Thrillers, a noir-esque tale that focuses on the arrogance of mankind, and the dangers of playing at God. Incorporating the concepts of troubling technology and manufactured faith, this is a brisk narrative that sweeps readers on a journey across the globe to unearth a deadly weapon with the fate of all hanging in the balance. Various factions, whose intentions continue to remain cloudy, battle to reign supreme in this breakneck race to the finish line, and there’s never a moment of rest – once one secret is uncovered, another begins to emerge from the depths rearing its ugly head. Filled with twists and turns, this is a consuming expedition that’s unafraid to shed light on the darkest corners of the human psyche, presenting a story of those that are willing to do anything in the name of the greater good.
“The seven of us are some of the most powerful individuals on the planet. We’re demigods among men.”
This story revolves around a relatively large, diverse cast of characters that each have their own distinct voice. Readers follow the misadventures of rogue government agents bestowed with psychic powers, who also happen to suffer from severe mental disorders. Dr. Park, a doctor of psychiatry, leads a team consisting of those with skills, called cards, that include enhanced reflexes, the ability to learn expertise telepathically, the ability to induce paralysis through speech, electokinesis, probability distortion, and precognition, on a hunt to save humanity from those who would use belief as a weapon. While the characters can come across as very stereotypical, it was a treat to learn all their interesting quirks and disastrous dynamics as the story unfurled. Despite the fact they always seemed to be in a state of disagreement, the seven work exceedingly well together to bring this story to life.
Milazzo crafts his tale with simple prose, making this a smooth, straightforward read that is easy to devour. Bite-sized chapters, each featuring a different POV or set of POVs, tell the story in as linear a way as possible – I found the author’s choice of infrequently portraying the same occurrence through the eyes of multiple characters to give readers insight from all angles a wise decision. The fat smartly trimmed, every page in the book matters, each incident playing a pivotal role in the outcome of the tightly weaved plot. The book doesn’t suffer from exhaustive details, allowing the reader to deduce on their own until the larger picture comes into focus. And when it does, it does so with a gargantuan, unexpected bang.
The Faith Machine was a refreshing read that strays far from the norm of my usual literary diet, and I’m so glad I was given the chance to give this thriller a go. A quick, entertaining, action-packed read that refuses to hold anything back as it violently drags its readers along with a group of unlikely spy-type heroes, who inevitably leave a trail of destruction in their wake. The contained story itself ties up nicely, but leaves plenty of room for more in the future, and I’m excited to see what happens next in the world of ESPionage. If you’re looking for something a little different infused with intrigue and tension, then this may be the one for you, and I recommend you give it a try.
Note: A huge thank you to the author for providing a complementary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
CW: This may not be for the squeamish or easily offended – violence, racism, torture, sexual assault, gore.
Tone Milazzo is the author of Picking Up the Ghost, The Faith Machine, and the ESPionage Role-Playing Game.
Stories have always been Tone’s first love. When the first hunter told another about the one who got away, stories made us human. Stories lead to understanding. Fiction, religion, biographies, gossip, gaming, and history, it all goes into the slow cooker and out come stories.
To those ends Tone’s been around, professionally speaking. Marine, taxi driver, teacher, assistant to scientists, and coder. This breath of experience has given Tone a little knowledge about a lot of things, good and bad.
He lives in San Diego with his wife Melissa Milazzo (author of Time is a Flat Circle) and two dogs, all of whom are more capable than he is.
That’s all I got for ya! Be sure to keep an eye on the official The Faith Machine tour page over at Storytellers On Tour (https://storytellersontour.online/2020/05/04/tour-schedule-the-faith-machine-by-tone-milazzo/) to see what the other bloggers have to say!