Thursday, July 17, 2014

“Ray Keating's latest novel, ‘The River,’ takes you on an intriguing summer ride...” – The Washington Times


A very special book reviewer at THE WASHINGTON TIMES has served up a fantastic review of Ray Keating’s THE RIVER: A PASTOR STEPHEN GRANT NOVEL. Like Stephen Grant, this reviewer, Kenneth V. Blanchard, was with the CIA and is now a pastor.

Blanchard writes: “How do you handle being a former CIA adrenaline junkie turned pastor? Ray Keating's latest novel, ‘The River,’ takes you on an intriguing summer ride from Langley to the Vatican with Stephen Grant, a former CIA agent who leaves his intelligence career behind and becomes a pastor of St. Mary's Lutheran Church on East Long Island. Mr. Keating's storytelling is so lifelike that I almost thought I had worked with him when I was at Langley. Like the fictitious pastor, I actually spent 20 years working for the U.S. intelligence community, and once I started reading ‘The River,’ I had to keep reading because it was so well-crafted and easy to follow and because it depicted a personal struggle that I knew all too well. I simply could not put it down.”

Blanchard adds: “What Ian Fleming's 007 series has probably done for ex-MI-6 agents and Tom Clancy has done for retired CIA officers, Mr. Keating has done for the minority of former CIA agents who have served their country by working in the intelligence community, but now wish to serve God.”

In addition, he points out: “‘The River’ takes us to the core of moral principle; that is the battle between good versus evil, right versus wrong and the differences between one's past and present lives, leaving the reader in deep reflection about the blurred lines that inspire inner conflict in anyone who has a past that they must reconcile with… Mr. Keating also allows you to discover how each of his characters tick in a style and tone reminiscent of some of the best loved books of all time. The details and descriptions of ‘The River’ brought me back into the secret corridors of the agency.”

Blanchard concludes: “Many spy-novel authors try to appeal to members of the intelligence community as well as the average American looking for a little international intrigue and James Bond excitement. With Mr. Keating's Pastor Grant, he has touched upon a small fraternity within the intelligence community of those who have wanted to serve both God and country — but necessarily in that order.”

Read the full review at


THE RIVER: A PASTOR STEPHEN GRANT NOVEL is available from Amazon.com at


And don’t forget about the first three PASTOR STEPHEN GRANT NOVELS…

WARRIOR MONK: A PASTOR STEPHEN GRANT NOVEL has earned an average Amazon.com reviewer rating of 4.3 stars out of 5, and was ranked as a Top 10 book on a WORLD magazine June 2013 list.



ROOT OF ALL EVIL? A PASTOR STEPHEN GRANT NOVEL has earned an average Amazon.com reviewer rating of 4.6 stars out of 5.



AN ADVENT FOR RELIGIOUS LIBERTY: A PASTOR STEPHEN GRANT NOVEL has earned an average Amazon.com reviewer rating of 4.4 stars out of 5.



Ray Keating has been called “a great novelist” by the host of “BookTalk” radio, and Amazon.com reviewers have compared his thrillers to the works of Clancy, Ludlum, Grisham, Cussler, and Morrell.

Please “Like” the Pastor Stephen Grant Novels Facebook page at:


Follow Ray Keating, the creator of Pastor Stephen Grant, on Twitter @RevGrantNovel

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