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is a spiritual story of choir boys from the UK travelling Down Under to
Australia to perform a series of concerts.
On the way to the airport a
tragic accident occurs. Their young lives are taken from them in a matter of
The boy’s spirits are trapped
As the new owners of the boys’
church move in, Mr. John Sutton and his wife Melanie, the boys see it as an
opportunity to communicate to him by making their presence felt. And, by
explaining they are stuck on Earth.
John comes up with an idea and
is on a mission to help move the boys on, set their spirits free, and give
One Last Concert was a beautiful, heart-warming story.
I could not stop thinking
about the book after I had finished reading it.
It was incredibly moving.
I often wonder how I would
have coped if it was myself being a parent to one of the boys, due to the tragic
I would recommend suitable
reading Teens and up.
Through An Open Mind
written by Christopher J. Holcroft from the beginning to the very end is a real
combines the love and trust of two young people - one alive today and the other
who died a decade ago.
Their friendship grows when both
their fathers are caught in a murderous plot by a crooked Police Commissioner.
Mystery, corruption and pure
courage gives our hero Kit the ability to bridge the seemingly impossible and
allow communication between him and his best friend which results in intrigue
and a major disruption within the Australian community.
At the conclusion, Kit finds he
has a continued relationship with his spirit guides we can only marvel at.
'A Thoroughly Enjoyable Read'
is one of his three
afterlife tales; the others being
In Finding Thomas,
Christopher Holcroft incorporates his research into the existence of afterlife
spirit guides, as well as visits from the recently departed. Holcroft’s central
character Kit, who experiences an out-of-body (near-death) experience whilst on
a surgery operating table, employs the talents of Kit’s afterlife visitors to
thwart a crooked Police Commissioner’s homicide attempt on Kit’s father.
Holcroft’s explanation of spirit
guides is addressed in the novel’s acknowledgements, which is helpful in
understanding the presence of Kit’s spirit guide Thomas, who died in the 19th
Holcroft makes use of
more-recently departed spirits in developing this intriguing crime thriller.
Christopher Holcroft lost two
brothers while writing Finding Thomas, and the influence of those deaths
and the ‘presence’ of spirit guides (again see the novel’s acknowledgments)
is evident in the plot. A thoroughly enjoyable read.
Intrigue Necessary To Draw The Reader'
Last Concert is one of his three
afterlife tales; the others being
Set in a disused, village church in England, Holcroft
paints a picture of a (or in this case many) parents’ worst nightmare when
bidding their child farewell on a world adventure trip to Australia in order to
perform as part of a church-based, youth choir and then, never again
seeing that child.
A tragic accident in the opening chapter creates the
scene. The choir members do not reach their destination and more-importantly
for their bodies are not possible.
Approximately two decades after the incident and with the
youths yet to reach the afterlife, Christopher Holcroft introduces the lost
souls to sound engineer John Sutton, who buys the church and ‘meets’ the souls.
It is through Sutton’s efforts that Holcroft draws the
parents and lost souls together for one last concert, thus allowing the
choristers to move on.
Holcroft’s delicate handling of what might be viewed by
some as being interference, provides the intrigue necessary to draw the reader
into the village and wanting to help the families. A thoroughly enjoyable read.
'Reader Encouraged To Research
is one of his three afterlife
tales; the others being
This intriguing account of a Sydney youth (Connor), who,
in the 21st century, has flashbacks to a similarly-aged youth
Andrew’s real-life experiences of a being on board HMAS Voyager, when in
1964 in one of Australia’s worst peace-time, maritime disasters, she was cut in
half by HMAS Melbourne.
Seaman Andrew West was one of 67 sailors, together with 14
officers, who perished in the collision.
Andrews’s body was never recovered, but it seems that his
soul had unfinished business that required some human intervention.
Through modern-day Connor’s flashback, Holcroft cleverly
closes the loop on some vagaries of the disaster and, more importantly,
reconnects Andrew with his estranged parents thus allowing Andrew to move on to
Whilst not purporting to be an historical novel,
Holcroft’s account encourages the reader to research the events leading up to
the actual collision and the aftermath, which included two Royal Australian Navy
I thoroughly enjoyed Holcroft’s story, so much so that I
also read his other two after-life novels.
For A Village That Lost Its 'Voice'
One Last Concert
is a feel good book most people at the moment are looking for
as there is too much violence and mayhem on the streets.
found when going into the book I was venturing into the unknown and as things
progressed, I became more and more engrossed in the story.
time, I was a Police Officer who dealt with death on a regular basis. I have
always felt a lot of empathy for the deceased. In this book, I was brought again
to feel a lot of empathy for the parents of the boys who who were taken so
dramatically, so early in their young lives. I felt very sad for the entire
village that had lost its heart.
have died in various accidents and misadventures, I haven’t felt much for them.
Instead, I felt for those left behind to mourn their lost ones and had empathy
Concert took me on a journey of semi-reality in which the deceased boys in the
story hadn’t finished their life’s ambitions before they were taken. Also, music
has played a large part in my life. The music portrayed in the book was well
researched by the author and provided a good emotional accompaniment.
provided an emotional outlook I had been searching for, for some time.
'Thought Provoking And Challenging'
Time Voyager, the third in his afterlife series, Australian
author Christopher Holcroft has hit his writing straps.
The writing is
fluent and not overly repetitive while, as the story romps along, the words sail
off the page like spray from a Manly Ferry’s bow.
Holcroft gives the
story’s premise great plausibility by anchoring it to the historical fact of the
Royal Australian Navy’s worst peacetime naval accident: the sinking of HMAS
Voyager off Jervis Bay, on the New South Wales south coast, in 1964 with the
loss of 82 lives.
incident is etched in the mind of many Australians who were alive at the time.
Holcroft cleverly uses this widespread knowledge of the incident to bring a
genuine feeling of reality to Time Voyager’s story. He strengthens this
by giving Time Voyager a modern day setting in and around Sydney and its
harbour. The use of locations and activities familiar to Sydneysiders and
visitors gives further life to the story.
story begins as our central character, Connor McBride, struggles to understand
the reasons for his recurring nightmares during his transition from school to
his chosen vocation of working on Sydney ferries.
As the story begins
Connor searches within himself to decide what course he should set to uncover
the reason for his nightmares. With the support of his parents and his close
friend Darren, Connor seeks professional assistance to unlock his nightmares.
Under hypnosis, Connor regresses to a past life as a sailor. When he learns
that the nightmares are anchored in the reality of the Voyager incident Connor
reaches out to Voyager survivors for assistance. As the story unfolds and
evolves, we discover that two lives, one past and one present, appear to have
been merged into one. As the story progresses, nightmares are replaced by
dreams and fond recollections of an earlier short, but well lived, life.
With a sense of
clarity emerging Connor determines to set the story straight for those left
behind and those who were yet to be born at the time of the Voyager incident.
In Time Voyager,
Holcroft sails a steady course as he gives us an afterlife story that is thought
provoking, challenging, and ultimately very satisfying.
'The Book Was Hard To Put Down'
An excellent book to get for a
present for someone who loves reading is called
One Last Concert
Christopher J. Holcroft.
I can say I normally don't read,
but the book was hard to put down.
'Helpful For Others
liked the storyline for
liked the fact the characters came into play in their time when they were
felt for the parents of the two main characters as they didn’t have their boys
there and couldn’t get closure after their sons died.
One of the things I found hard to fathom was how Connor was picked randomly to
be ‘Andrew West’ when he was born as he wasn’t even related to Andrew.
could picture every character in my mind and every place you described quite
It was interesting the number of cups of coffee and cake Connor had but when you
think of it, sharing coffee is when people talk about things. Also, he couldn’t
drink alcohol and drive after speaking to the various families.
believe in people having lived past lives – not all people do. However, I found
with Time Voyager it could be helpful for others seeking answers to
problems they may have today that came about in another time.
'Couldn't Put It Down ... A Riveting Novel'
Just finished reading
One Last Concert.
Really enjoyed the story and characters.
Once I started reading I couldn't put it down (except to wipe my eyes). At times
I nearly forgot that was a novel and not an actual true story.
At one point I was about to Google the event and also found myself wondering if
I could source the music, you really had me.
Congratulations for writing such a riveting novel.
Sydney, New South Wales
Lost In The World Of Time Voyager
on a lazy Sunday afternoon I found myself unable to
put down the story. I sat in my comfy chair to keep on reading the story of
Connor McBride and his voyage into the past. It was a thoroughly enjoyable read
sparking questions about previous lives and incarnations and the impact they can
have on current lives.
A few hours later I surfaced to realise the sun had set while I had been lost in
the world of
Time Voyager and Connor McBride. Recognising the hero of our
story Connor McBride held the key to the futures of three unrelated families
just led to wanting to keep reading until the book was finished.
My family was ignored while I went along for the journey with Connor. A
feeling of satisfaction enveloped me at the end of a lazy afternoon of time well
spent completely enjoying the experience of the book called
Richmond, New South Wales
Tale That Is Both Exciting And Harrowing'
An interesting concept is presented to a young man, giving him the chance to
explore what appears to be memories, yet in a time he couldn’t have known.
With the support of others he discovers a tale that is both
exciting and harrowing at the same time, giving him strength and insight into
his life today. What happens when your life crosses paths with another and
lives is a topic rarely given any credence in many circles, but this book gives
the reader a tale that makes you wonder….
Written with courage and compassion for the young man, this
thought provoking book allows all to take a second look at those moments and
feelings of déjà vu wrapped in a tale of discovery and action, inviting the
reader to question …
Sydney, New South Wales
Great Book For Young People!'
to an accident in my past where I had what is likely to be called an out of body
experience, I understand the ideas behind the story of
It is not necessary
to believe or accept the premise of the mystics or seeing ghosts, to find this
is a great book for young people.
Being here for a
reason, such as being a mentor or leader for those around us, does not make life
a burden and does make us a valued part of a community.
As others have
commented - you just got to live life, do what you enjoy and enjoy what you do.
'hardened' Journalist brought to tears
thanks for your kind words with your advice, and your words with your
2-24 this afternoon, I finished reading
having had to split
four sessions, due to a heavy commitment to other matters of late.
I have found it a
delightful story. As a journo I have seen dead bodies — some even decaying—
and covered tragedy stories, but have been able to handle these.
But I have to
admit, tears come to me easily when I read about, or witness, happenings which
reaction to goodness, such as reflected in your book. That happened to me in
particular around chapter 20, when matters were really building. I think it was
then I had to stop and wipe away tears in order to continue.
initial reaction to the story was a disbelief that so much could happen in such
a short space of time! Of course I came to realise that help was coming from
but the immediacy of responses from everyone helping rather astounded me.
Of course it
managed to condense matters to an exciting but obvious conclusion.
On your writing
style, congratulations on your technique of telling 90 percent of the story in
direct quotes, carefully constructed. Sometimes it seemed to me that you were
cramming a lot of detail into these quotes, but somehow they seemed to work.
We the readers I think probably spotted early the success of the whole deal,
but we still needed to read about it—even though it was an over-the-top finale.
Fuel' For An Adventure
of Passage, it was probably the best
Scott Morrow book yet.
Its more challenging and I felt
it really spoke for itself, as well as making me yearn to go on an adventure.
I felt that this was more ‘in’
the real world in comparison to the others and it comes from a different angle,
but none the less it has a vivid way to illustrate the landscapes in your mind.
I strongly recommend this book
to anyone who needs something to do when the wifi is broken, or when its rainy.
I have to say I was a member of
Scouts and I read this book when I was on the Australian Scouts Jamboree. It was
very wet, so when we weren’t playing some ridiculous card game I would read in
my tent with some mates, also great dream fuel …
All in all a 8/10 book!!!
has gripped me and kept me immersed in the wonders of adventure and danger.
book is one of a kind in painting the picture of scouting and has left me
thoroughly enjoyed it and feel like I have truly been on an adventure.
also showed me the importance of planning as Christopher has yet again pumped
his book full of information and guided you through the paragraphs without
is a must read for all young teenagers who want a true thrill.
'HIDDEN BETWEEN THE PAGES'
J. Holcroft’s book
Only The Brave Dare
is a gripping adventure of
Scott, a young male who has joined Venturers (a level in scouting for teenagers
aged 14-18) and is deeply captivating.
is full of adventure and imagination just radiating from the pages of the book.
Only The Brave Dare
innocently depicts the fun and games of being in
scouts and working as a team. It is full of very useful information that is
hidden between the pages.
I would honestly rate it 8 out of 10! If you enjoy
thrills it is a must read!
Finished reading this
wonderful book (One
Last Concert) on Friday, started it on Wednesday! It should come with a warning
to have tissues near at all times.
The characters are so
believable I was wanting to Google the details of the accident and I will buy a
copy of the CD from the concert!
Thanks for a great read.
Megan Van de Weyer,
Interest Grew With Each Page I Read'
Christopher J Holcroft captured my imagination from the very first chapter of
One Last Concert
and my interest continued to grow with each page I read.
What a beautiful story with an unexpected twist at the end!
Thank you Christopher it truly is a 'feel good' story.
Robyn Dunn, Tarot reader and Tarot teacher
One Last Concert
'Gave Me Goosebumps'
I thoroughly enjoyed reading
One Last Concert.
It had me laughing, in tears, gave me goosebumps
and the twist at the end surprised
A heartwarming tale of newcomers fitting in,
community spirit and connection; how a sense of purpose brings people together.
Renown Australian Children's Author
Finding Thomas Was Hard To Put Down
was far too engrossed to put this book down even for a short period of time.
Finding Thomas was well researched and true to my beliefs on mediums and the
I can't recommend it highly enough!
Well done Christopher J Holcroft. I can't wait to read the next one.
Robyn Dunn, Tarot reader and Tarot teacher
- Bendigo, Victoria
It Could Have Happened To Me
One Last Concert very much and it brought back memories of lost
The plot Holcroft lays out could have happened to me after I
lost some dear friends in tragic circumstances. It was believable to read
about the spirits of people stuck between heaven and earth - it's not
something totally fiction.
The idea of having a number of people perform songs
throughout the book was very captivating. It makes the story more
interesting and believable.
One Last Concert gives us hope of a link between us and the
loved ones that have left us on this earthly journey.
The book left me with hope and I recommend it for everyone.
Finding Thomas - A Top Read!
Thomas was a lot more interesting than I at first thought it would be as I
thought there may be a lot more fiction and I'm not too much into fiction.
Holcroft has drawn on real life to construct and build up
his story and I like his constant referring to reality as it could happen in
our own lives.
This book reads more like reality than fiction. I enjoyed
the story and Holcroft's inspiration for writing it.
I was lucky being at the book launch and I really love the
book. It is top reading and I recommend it.
Holcroft's idea of people having a 'near death experience'
is interesting and should, from a scientific point of view, be investigated.
'Spine Tingling And Full Of Surprises'
One Last Concert by Christopher J. Holcroft is an interesting read that
keeps the reader wanting to know more.
Holcroft uses his military background to share with us his leadership skills
and teamwork as a village and then nation pulls together to help others.
The journey we go on in One Last Concert is also a spiritual one as we learn
how those who haven't crossed over communicate with us and how some are left
with unfinished business.
One Last Concert is a delightful read that is heartwarming, spine tingling
and full of surprises till the end.
BOOK EXPLORES LIFE AND DEATH
St George and Sutherland
30th May 2013
By Monica Heary
FIVE-TIMES novelist Christopher J. Holcroft used a simple theory when he
wrote his latest book.
The theory was along the lines
of how it was that so often a person enters a room feels a shiver down their
spine - only to find out someone has died in the room.
It was this sort of experience
and a theme of exploring what happens to the "spirits" of those that have died
that has fascinated Mr Holcroft for some time.
After writing a trilogy of
books in the genre of adventure for youth he wrote a book for adults about the
about a near-death experience.
The former Fairfax Journalist
said that following that book "the next logical theme was to look at what if you
die suddenly or out of your time."
The result is
One Last Concert
that takes his interest in the spiritual to a different level.
The backdrop centres on 45
teenage boys from an English village who are on their way to Australia when they
meet their end.
All the villagers had a son in
the choir and the book looks at the effect of the tragedy on the village.
"What I have done is look at
an entire community and how they can be helped to move on and to satisfy the
grieving, how one must help bring about the moving on of spirit," Mr Holcroft
He took almost a year writing
the book which included consulting several mediums.
One Last Concert
will be launched tomorrow 7 - 10pm, at St Jospeh's Catholic church hall, Parker
The book is published by
Infinity Publishing (US) and costs $20 from buybooksontheweb.com
Moving And A Wonderful Escape
Once you start reading
Last Concert, you get straight into the story
line, the characters are brought to life with wonderful sensitivity.
This is a feel good book, and great for someone
who has lost someone, as it gives you hope there is life outside of what we
know. I found the book to be emotionally moving and it was a wonderful escape
from life as we know.
A book filled with hope, community spirit and
Concert a pleasure to read and a book that makes you
really think about the afterlife.
quite intriguing how the new owner of the old church brought a whole community
together to help realise his dream.
is an easy read and one that will make the reader think about life after death
and what heaven could be like.
a joy to read and highly
On the Edge Of
So I finished your
Finding Thomas last week and you asked for my opinion ... well I think you did a fantastic job!!!!
At first I had to get
your voice out of my head when I was reading and there are a few times that I
was reminded it was a teen fiction book and not for adults.
There was only one part
I didn't like, and that was when they were all at the barbecue. I thought what
happened was repeated too much in that chapter, but that's just my opinion.
And the ending ... well
you had me on the edge of my seat!!
All round a fantastic
read and I will recommend it to all I know who like a good read.
Author: Christopher J. Holcroft
Thriller Finding Thomas
Sheds Light On Death
Christopher J. Holcroft’s fourth written novel
Finding Thomas is a well-tied package of
murder, suspense, rescue, and adventure. I strongly recommend this book for
teenage boys (around ages 14-15) because of the alluring sense of crime that is
woven throughout the entire plot. Girls who enjoy books with danger are also
encouraged to try this read.
Right from the prologue of this book,
Finding Thomas grabs your
attention. It begins with a phone call, a sobbing mother on one
end and her comforting husband who works for a politician on the
other. Her shattering cry of her son being dead will immediately
bring forward questions. From there on, the story only gets more
captivating. The son and also protagonist, Kit Green, is
miraculously brought back to life but after his revival, he is
not the average teenager that he was before. He now possesses
the ability to see and talk to spirits that have passed away.
Finding Thomas now diverts
the plot so that it has more of a supernatural feel. The
deceased son of the politician (that Kit’s father works for)
befriends Kit in order to stop their fathers from being killed
by a shady police officer. And thus, their thrilling crime
adventure begins. There are many twists and turns during
plotline and will always keep you wondering what will happen
This book is written in third person and therefore
you can understand and read situations from the eyes of different characters,
although it mainly is from Kit’s point of view. As you dwell further into the
book, you will start to love Kit Green and his wistful character. Holcroft has
added many characters that you may be attached to and will cheer on as the plot
progresses. Finding Thomas is one of those
intense books that will never bore you. Although it may not be the type of book
that you will be forever glued to but you will definitely finish it enjoyably.
As mentioned before, typical teenage boys will take a great liking to this book
but not all girls will enjoy it as much as I did.
Christopher J. Holcroft has much experience with
journalism, communications, media training, and complex public information
planning and implementation. After serving 35 years as Venturer Scout Leader and
member of the Australian Army Reserve, he decided to write adventuring boy-like
novels, encouraging young men to read more. Finding
Thomas is his fourth book, greatly inspired by the passing of his
brothers and his belief that there is life after death. He is now married to
Yvonne and has three sons. The family enjoys outdoor recreational activities
such as camping and scuba diving.
Highly recommended by Reviewer:
Iris Park, Allbooks Review Int.
Reviewer: Iris Park
Book shines light on death
BY KATE CARR
03 May, 2011 01:28 PM
THE tragic death of his two brothers just eight weeks apart in 2009 led
Christopher Holcroft, of Banksia, to reassess his beliefs about life and death.
One of the results
of this difficult time is Mr Holcroft's novel Finding Thomas.
The book is about
life, death and everything in between, as seen through the eyes of a teenage boy
who had his own near-death experience.
Mr Holcroft had
begun researching the novel before his brothers died, but the process took on a
far more personal edge following their deaths.
"It has been a very
cathartic experience," Mr Holcroft said.
He said his belief
in an afterlife was confirmed by a dream he had before his brothers' deaths,
along with visits to mediums and conversations with people who had had a
near-death experiences told me about the white light they had experienced when
they died," he said.
"They all described
it as a place of great joy."
The main character
in Finding Thomas is teenager Kit Green, who finds he can see and talk to
spirits after dying and coming back to life on the operating table.
Kit teams up with
the spirit of another teenager who has died to help uncover government
corruption and thwart the murderous plans of a crooked police officer.
Finding Thomas is
Mr Holcroft's fourth book, following three novels aimed at Scouts.
The book will be
launched at 7pm at St Francis Xavier Church, Arncliffe, on May 5.
Crusading spirit: Christopher Holcroft,
of Banksia, will launch his new book Finding Thomas, which looks at what happens
when you die, on May 11. Picture: Chris Lane
A Rite Of Passage - A quick