By Tom Momberg
A Baysider just published a science-fiction fantasy thriller influenced by his own – literally – heart-wrenching story.
Dan Dwyer wrote “Angel of the Lord,” about a father whose only desire is to bury his family following a tragedy. It will be the first in a series of three self-published books, entitled “Jonathan’s Travels.”
Dwyer’s main character, Jonathan Prescott, goes through a deep theological battle between Christianity and Islam following the death of his family. But unable to bury them, Prescott must instead go through a series of events to prevent the world’s impending doom.
Saved from terrorists and professional killers, Prescott meets Angelina, an angel sent to watch over him.
Angelina was forced to descend after questioning God, similar to but unlike the angel Lucifer, who fell after attempting to unseat God and demand that all worship him instead.
In the book, Angelina is also sent to fall in love with a human due to her doubt in her faith in God. As Dwyer put it, the Christian God is one of love, and in doubt of her faith, Angelina is tasked to try to understand the concept and embrace love for another being while working to protect Prescott.
But just as Christians put faith in a God of love, Muslims’ God is one of mercy, though they are one and the same. And as Dwyer’s book is a story of religious conversion, Prescott embraces Islam and the God of mercy, feeling abandoned by love and having lost all those he cares about.
Alongside each other, Angelina and Prescott fight to help each other and save the world from invasion.
Dwyer drew the subject matter of his book, which is not the first he has written, from his own experiences. Once a seminary student of philosophy, Dwyer’s theological story of religious conversions in “Angel of the Lord” is overladen with a science fiction scenario to show how his characters react to such dramatic events.
Whether the plot drives the characters’ actions or the characters’ actions drive the plot is a matter of their own internal battle with faith. The theological lining throughout the book was influenced by Dwyer’s own near death experience about 13 years ago.
“Within 10 days, I had a double pulmonary embolism, a heart attack and a stroke. I said this must never have happened before, and I remember coming up with the expression ‘I can’t die, but I can be killed.’ I use that expression in the book,” Dwyer said during a sitdown interview. “Ironically, Jonathan can die, but he can’t be killed.”
But Dwyer, a Bayside Hills resident for about 40 years has a story, too, aside from that catastrophic experience. He is an Army veteran, who was stationed in Germany during the Vietnam War. He was then a radio producer for several years in New England and New York, where he met his wife. He wrote his first book at the age of 33 about a radio journalist, though he never had it published.
Dwyer went on to work in financial services as a broker after his daughter was born in 1980. He worked with tax shelters and produced financial plans for financial advisers. He published a financial planning book that was used by some universities for a few years, and designed templates for IBM’s Lotus 1-2-3 spreadsheet program.
The self-published author started his own financial practice in 1987, where he worked as a Certified Financial Planner and Registered Investment Advisor until retiring in 2014.
Now, Dwyer has turned his attention to his literary talents. He said he plans to release the second book in his series next spring. It is titled “Aliens and an Angel.”
Print copies and digital Kindle versions of Dwyer’s “Angel of the Lord” can be purchased on Amazo