I like stories that make me think. That’s why I was thrilled to have the opportunity to review the short story “The Visitor” by J.L Pattison (Disclaimer: The author gave me a free copy of this story in exchange for an honest review). Here is a work of fiction that explores time travel, the sovereignty of God, social decline, and human nature in just 32 pages.
The theme of time travel has been explored many times before but this is not just another time travel adventure. The story begins when a time traveller arrives in the wrong time with a letter detailing several unfortunate events that will happen in that time’s future. Yet, despite being forewarned of future events, the characters either ignore the letter’s warnings or are somehow unable to change what is about to occur. Herein lies the rub: human beings don’t want to believe in negative outcomes and are reluctant to alter their course even when the truth is staring them straight in the face. This fact about human nature should give everyone pause given the current state of the world we live in.
The story itself portrays realistic characters in a well-written fashion, with the writing improving in quality as the plot progresses. The author demonstrates that he is well-read and knowledgeable in many areas, especially in literature and history. Yet despite his obvious intelligence, Mr. Pattison does not talk down to the reader but rather draws the reader into the story he weaves. Along with other reviewers, I agree that this would be a great episode for a Twilight Zone or Outer Limits type series. I certainly would watch it, just as I would happily read more of J.L. Pattison’s work.
Overall, this is a story worth reading and pondering, especially given its low cost and reading time. I encourage you to give “The Visitor” a read. You won’t be disappointed.