The Healer

John Thomas Tuft

Book Cover

GENRE

ACTION ADVENTURE DRAMA FANTASY RELIGIOUS SUSPENSE / THRILLER

    Core Theme

    FINDING ONE’S PURPOSE AND DOING WHAT’S RIGHT

    TIME PERIOD

    20th Century (multiple decades)

    COMPARABLE TITLES

    ANGELS AND DEMONS; INFERNO; LOST; CELESTINE PROPHECY

    CHARACTER LIST

    GIDEON. 30S. FORMER PHYSICIAN’S ASSISTANT. LOST IN THE WORLD. THE HEALER.

    ELI. 30S. FORMER CHAPLAIN. CRIPPLED PHYSICALLY AND MENTALLY.

    LAUREL. 20S. GIDEON’S GUARDIAN AND LOVER.

    PEARL. 70+. PROPHETIC AND LOONEY. ELI’S GUIDE.

    JONATHAN. 50+. GUARDIAN TRAINER AND GIDEON’S PROTECTOR.

    QUINN. 40S. NIGHTCROSSER AND ANTAGONIST.

    JENN. 30S. BLOODGUIDE. ELI’S WIFE.

    Logline

    Gideon Waters faces mortal danger when he discovers his blood can cure disease. And anyone who helps him is brutally murder, Gideon races to find the pregnant woman in Pittsburgh who holds the last hope of humanity, the wife of the man who took Gideon's own family away from him.

    Target Audiences

    Age: 35-54

    Target Gender: Universal

    Setting

    Pittsburgh and Ohio River Valley, Shenandoah Valley, Lake Erie

    Based on a True Story

    No

    Publishing Details

    Status: Yes: self-published

    Publisher: The Mulberry Books

    Year Published: 2019

    Starting Description

    Rescued from a climbing accident, Gideon is in an ER, trying to console a dying girl. Some of the blood from his wounds get on the girl's IV and she is healed. An elderly man who says Gideon is the long awaited Healer, is brutally murdered. Gideon flees into the night.

    Ending Description

    After letting himself love once again, Gideon's lover is taken from him by those arrayed against him. His long lost father returns from exile to take Laurel's place so that his son can again learn to love.

    Group Specific

    Information not completed

    Hard Copy Available

    Yes

    ISBN

    1952405483

    Mature Audience Themes

    Nudity,Extreme Violence

    Plot - Other Elements

    Meaningful Message,Philosophical Questions

    Plot - Premise

    Internal Journey/Rebirth

    Main Character Details

    Name: Gideon Waters

    Age: 33

    Gender: Male

    Role: Skeptic

    Key Traits: Complex,Empathetic,Heartthrob,Heroic

    Additional Character Details

    Name: Elijah Marks

    Age: 35

    Gender: Male

    Role: Emotional

    Key Traits: Aspiring,Complex,Religious,Desperate,Selfless,Honorable,Insecure

    Additional Character Details

    Name: Laurel Rayn

    Age: 25

    Gender: Female

    Role: sidekick

    Key Traits: Adventurous,Badass,Aggressive,Complex,Sexy,Confident,Faithful

    Additional Character Details

    The author has not yet written this

    Development Pitch

    A fast moving story where The DaVinci Code meets The Celestine Prophecy. After his wife and unborn son are killed, Gideon learns his blood cures disease. Reluctant to believe in such fairy tales, he is confronted by Laurel, calling herself his guardian. As they try to stay ahead of those seeking to capitalize on his gift, and deciding who should benefit from it, they fall in love. Those who try to help them are brutally murdered by shadowy bloodtrackers. They must reach the pregnant wife of the man who was responsible for the deaths of Gideon's family and heal her before she dies for her child is destined to be the hope of the world..

    Genre

    ACTION, THRILLER, SUSPENSE, RELIGION, FANTASY

    Brief

    Gideon loses his way after the accidental death of his wife and unborn child. He finds his purpose again and a new lease on life when he discovers the healing powers of his blood. His blood contains a sacred element that cures anyone except himself. But knowledge of his blood's power comes with a curse and anyone who knows he is the healer faces an almost certain death.

    Overall Rating

    FAIR

    Point of View

    THIRD PERSON

    Narrative Elements

    Authors Writing Style: GOOD

    Characterization: GOOD

    Commerciality: FAIR

    Franchise Potential: GOOD

    Pace: FAIR

    Premise: FAIR

    Structure: FAIR

    Theme: FAIR

    Accuracy of Book Profile

    The actual story is much more mythology heavy and about figuring out the power behind Gideon's blood and curse rather than the dilemma of having to save the child of the man who killed his child and wife. The logline alludes to this religious-like prophecy dimension but the short summary skips over the otherworldly aspect of Gideon's blood.

    Draw of Story

    The opening scene is very striking in that it instantly creates emotional investment for Gideon as he is witnessing the loss of his wife and child without realizing he was called to the ER because he's the emergency contact not because he was the attending doctor. This confusion and then realization is gripping and raw. Gideon has to come to terms with their death twice over when he finds out the car accident was a human error not the weather.

    Possible Drawbacks

    The action is spread out around many hiding and recovery period for Gideon. This allows down time for research into the meaning behind his blood and connection to the Sanctuary Chronicles but the murder cycle can become repetitive in that they rarely uncover new information or misleads while in action.

    Use of Special Effects

    THE STORY RELIES HEAVILY ON SPECIAL EFFECTS

    Primary Hook of Story

    The hook is that Gideon Waters is the prophecy Healer whose blood cures any disease yet knowing about his power can get the person killed. He must save the child of the man who killed his own family with this power and this child will have the power his unborn one was supposed to have.

    Fanbase Potential

    This could have a medium size fan base in that it is a supernatural murder mystery rooted in gritty realism, but the heavy original mythology might create a more complicated concept than what appeals to the normal larger action demographic.

    Awards Potential

    This is unlikely to have awards potential as most of the internal conflicts of the characters, outside of Eli and Gideon, do not have a range of emotions outside of dying. Thus it may be solidly acted but none of the scenarios for the side characters have the range needed to garner performance recognition.

    Envisioned Budget

    MEDIUM BUDGET

    Similar Films/TV Series

    FRAILTY, DAMNATION, THE PHANTOM MENACE, FALLEN, MYSTIC RIVER, THE DA VINCI CODE

    What’s New About the Story

    The mythology is original but the structure of how the mythology is revealed and the external main conflict tying in the prophecy to the survival of the enemy's child could be changed to make it more unique. The logic jump to how Eli's child could be the next Sacrament child of the Sanctuary Chronicles is already stretched enough that other options to have to save could be used that still require forgiveness of Gideon's part.

    Lead Characters

    Gideon's blood obviously stands out for its dual nature of being a blessing and a curse. However his character itself stands out for being determined and forgiving. He is selfless but not self-sacrificing.

    Uniqueness of Story

    This has original mythology that is meshes the supernatural elements well with gritty realism. But the structure and the main conflict end in a guessable manner. Showing Eli's intentions and connection to Gideon in an ongoing manner rather than as a reveal undermines his potential as a the possible threat involved in killing the knowing bystanders of Gideon's power.

    Possible Formats

    Film - Indie, Film - Streaming, Film - Studio

    Analyst Recommendation

    WORK IN PROGRESS

    Justification

    While the story has many positive points, it has room for improvement (see possible paths below). If you can't change the story at this point, my suggestion is using your notes as a guide to highlight the best aspects of it when taking the next steps, either putting a pitch page together, a treatment, or a presentation.

    Tips for Improvement

    Making Eli's connection to Gideon and whether he could be guilty of the murders more likely would make Eli a better red herring threat to add more tension and mystery to the rising actions of the blood's curse. Adjusting the structure of how the mythology is given as exposition could help the explanations feel fresher.

    Brief

    Gideon is shocked to find out that his blood has healing powers. Eli is shocked to learn that his comatose wife is carrying the unborn child believed to be the savior of the world. Eli needs to find Gideon to save his wife before it’s too late. Through the introduction of an ancient and metaphysical belief system, the two men go on an epic adventure to find each other, and themselves.

    What We Liked

    The Healer transports you into the reality of Guardians and BloodGuides and nightcrossers. It’s a fun fantasy world about a group of people on Earth trying to protect ancient beliefs that’s full of the type of lore fans would write their own fanfiction about. It has a diverse and interesting cast of characters with many twists and surprises along the way to keep engaged attention. The story follows narrative arcs of healing and redemption that add a special depth to the story.

    Film: This would make a compelling action adventure film with new revelations in almost every scene. The story is very cinematic in its grandiosity and the characters would translate well into a feature format. It's easy to get sucked into this world and it's taxonomy and mystery.

    TV: The book didn’t need to end when it ended, there was still room for so much more. That’s what would make it a great TV show. Episodes could alternate between Eli’s story and Gideon’s story, or they could follow different action beats since basically every chapter could be its own episode. Seasons could be built upon the world that’s been created with easy ways to introduce new characters and new challenges to overcome.

    Key points: Captivating story; Intrigue and suspense; Strong characters; Unique ideas; Compelling new world

    Synopsis

    The Healer tells the intertwined stories of two men, GIDEON, and ELI, whose stories intersect at the beginning of the book, and again at the end. We meet Gideon as he’s being summoned to clean up the blood of a now deceased pregnant woman in the OR of the hospital where he is a physician’s assistant. It’s only later that he finds out that the woman in the room was his wife, and that both she and the baby were killed in a car crash. In the room next door lies Eli, a chaplain at the hospital, and the man who crashed into them, in critical condition and fighting to survive.

    The next time we see Gideon is a year later, leaving the funeral of his grandfather, JP. He is out in the country and decides to go to a place on the mountain where he used to go when he was younger. He slips and almost dies. But awakes to find that he has been saved by LAUREL and JONATHAN. He’s badly injured and they drop him off at the hospital. He’s confused and wanders into a little girl’s room who is terminally ill. She seems happy to see him and gives him a friendship bracelet with half a heart. When he reaches out to take it, he gets some of his blood on her from the accident. As Gideon walks out he hears the doctors exclaiming that miraculously, the girl is healed. An elderly man follows Gideon out and tells his that he is The Healer, only to, moments later, be hit by a car and killed. It’s late and Gideon doesn’t have a car, so he walks back to JP’s house. When he gets to the house he opens the door to find the murdered bodies of the doctors from the hospital as well as the little girl. He doesn't know what to think.

    At the same time, Eli is going on a walk with his wife, JENN, near a dam. He survived the crash but was seriously injured and has a morphine pump in his spine to prevent the chronic pain. On the walk, Jenn tells him that she is pregnant, and they are both overjoyed. They then hear commotion and see that a child has fallen into the dam. Jenn jumps in to save the child, and while she saves the child, she gets swept over the side of the dam. They are able to find Jenn’s body and take her to the hospital. She is miraculously still alive, but not conscious. In Jenn’s room, Eli notices a weird doll with a bracelet around its neck. It is the other half of the heart from the friendship bracelet.

    The two men spend the rest of the book trying to figure out what they’ve gotten into and what role they are expected to play in it. Gideon goes on an adventure with Jonathan and Laurel as they try to convince him that he is The Healer they have been waiting for. Dodging bloodtrackers, fighting off nightcrossers, and trying to figure out how Gideon’s disappeared father plays into this, many fall along the way. Gideon and Laurel fall in love. And it is proven that Gideon is truly the Healer.

    Eli must face the terrible decision of whether or not to terminate Jenn’s pregnancy to increase her chances of survival. A cooky old woman named PEARL tells him that the baby is important and must be saved. Feeling helpless, Eli allows Pearl to lead him into his own great adventure trying to find the Healer to save his wife and child and through those actions, ultimately save humanity.

    The two men both learn the lore of the Sanctuary, an ancient belief system with many rules, rituals, roles, and enemies.

    Finally, after long and difficult journeys, the two men’s paths finally cross again. Allowing himself to forgive, Gideon gives Eli his blood to save Jenn. Then, Laurel gets kidnapped by a nightcrosser who demands Gideon trade his father for her life. Gideon doesn’t know how to find his father but does come to find that his father was one of the leaders of this group. When he meets the nightcrosser, Gideon’s father shows up and trades his life for hers. In the end, Jenn is saved, Eli is ordained as the group’s StoryKeeper, and Gideon and Laurel decide to go after Gideon’s dad to save him. It turns out, he’s been taken to another part of the universe. So that’s where they’ll go next.

    About The Author

    John Thomas Tuft has written three novels, including The Healer. He has served as a Presbyterian minister, mental health counselor, hospital chaplain, and sheep farmer. He hails from Western Pennsylvania, whose setting is the backdrop of the novel.