Book Reviews

Review by D. Lawrence Moore
Reviewed on September 21, 2020
Title Bipolar WINTER (Volume 1 of 3)
Author Samuel David Steiner
Publisher Tablo Pty Ltd (July 3, 2020)
ISBN-13 978-1649692139
Hardcover 286 pages
Language English

Who wants to live forever?

Bipolar Winter was brought to my attention by a friend of longstanding, who first encouraged me to read the website. Being curious, I did… and I was hooked. Not only does the author Samuel Steiner come across as a very modest and deeply intellectual man, the site is peopled with lots of very interesting blog posts and video trailers. The ones that caught my eye the most were those about Joseph Mengele and life extension, a subject which I learned is introduced in Bipolar Winter, with more to come in the final two books of the promised trilogy. I have more to say about this later in this review, but first, I must try to provide some context.

The book focuses on the Seventh-day Adventist Church, for reasons I won’t regurgitate here, but which can be found at bipolarwinter.com, and that fact alone was sufficient to pique my interest, as I have a friend who is a member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, and apart from the fact that he’s always trying (unsuccessfully) to get me to join, he’s a good, well-meaning guy. He’s told me all about the ‘good bits’, but as with anything in this life, I know there has to be more (I like to dig for dirt!). To be honest, as far as I’m concerned the jury’s out when it comes to religions and their doctrines, but I do like to acquaint myself with their histories, and the Bipolar Winter site seemed a good place to start with the Adventists. For example, they have a video which exposes the shocking stance of the Adventists on abortion and how the Church’s leaders lie to the ordinary members about it. That was more than enough to get me going. Well, that and the book’s prologue, which Mr. Steiner has very generously posted in full on the site.

The Adventists, or at least, the leaders of the Adventist Church seem to be a rum lot, swathed in a cloak of deception and lies, keeping their flock in the dark while being engaged in some very unpleasant and nefarious practices, which brings me back to Joseph Mengele and life extension. They say you can judge a person by the company they keep, and so logically, the same must apply to institutions and their leaders.

I don’t want to give away too many details of this fascinating read, about which I am constantly pondering what is true and what is fiction – such is the skill employed to meld the two – so I’ll hint at one or two salient matters covered by the narrative that led me, and will probably lead you, to do some further research. Mr. Steiner states on his website that the book is partly truth and partly fiction, and in doing so he has set a wonderful puzzle for his readers to solve. One of the main characters was subjected to the taking of a drug that was supposed to increase the lifespan of human beings, but not only that, it was administered when he was a child. It was something that Josef Mengele, who had been smuggled to Argentina after World War II, had been working on, with very young children (toddlers), and was done with the full knowledge of the Seventh-day Adventist Church leaders, who are, apparently, desperate to find the key that unlocks the door to extended, if not, eternal life.

It may all sound a bit farfetched, but who is to say what is normal any more when we live in a world of wild governmental overreaction to a virus, Pizzagate, the mysterious death of Jeffrey Epstein, and the rumors of not only what took place on his Lolita Island, but of what became of the children allegedly taken there. I have no more idea than you, but my point it that nothing can be taken at face value, and everything should be questioned.

The concept of living for ever, or beyond our allotted time span, is something that has fascinated generations and been the subject of many science fiction novels, and at times Bipolar Winter seems to be continuing the trend, except that it offers up clues to show that it isn’t just a figment of the author’s imagination. When you go away and do your research about Josef Mengele and the co-operation of the Seventh-day Adventist Church with the CIA through operations such as Project Paperclip, Project Whitecoat and Project MK Ultra, all of which existed and all of which make for spellbinding reading, you realize that life extension is very much on the minds of the shadowy global ‘elite’. Those of you who yearn for eternal life or extended years on this planet need to make yourselves aware of what is really going on in secret to make such things happen, and then ask themselves if you truly want to be involved. As a great man (or woman) once said: “Be careful what you wish for, lest it come true.”

Being a vegetarian, my eye was also caught by a rather fleeting reference to the fact that Ellen White, prophetess and one of the founders of the SDA, had called for members of the Church awaiting the Second Coming to stop eating meat. She argued that eating the flesh of animals numbed the brain and affected a person’s morality. Now I’m not sure about that, although I do feel fitter and healthier than when I was a meat eater. Numbed brain? No. More moral? Probably not. Anyway, I’m now researching this and hoping it will be revisited and explored further in volumes two and three when they are published.

I learned a lot from reading Bipolar Winter, as it spurred me on to find out more about the subjects covered in what is a wide ranging and intricate narrative. It’s a story not to be rushed, but to be thought about, as it raises all kinds of questions which produce answers that begin to explain some of the madness we are seeing taking place in the world today. When events defy logic, you know something is afoot. In that respect, Bipolar Winter is your guide and your friend.

Review by Ray Morris
Reviewed on September 14, 2020
Title Bipolar WINTER (Volume 1 of 3)
Author Samuel David Steiner
Publisher Tablo Pty Ltd (July 3, 2020)
ISBN-13 978-1649692139
Hardcover 286 pages
Language English

Disjointed

The story started in the 15th C with Martin Luther and an apparent plot involving end time events involving the Roman Catholic church and the Seventh Day Adventist church.

I started reading this with interest, however it jumped around different people, places etc and introduced isues like Septem Montes, the Fifth Reich, Monarch programming, a mysterious “Mr Summers” and various othe characters without clearly indicating how they all fitted into the overall story.

It involved corrupt officials, a rigged trial, a kidnapping & the planned use of either nuclear or biological weapons to bring about the Apocalypse. There was a secret agent working for the NSA but also within the Church of LDS (Mormons) with the full knowledge of the NSA.

The story toggled between Europe, South America & the US at a dizzying rate.

It was just getting to the point where I thought it might all come together when the last chapter just ended with “To be continued”.

Overall I felt disappointed

Review by Dr. Melissa Caudle
Reviewed on August 24, 2020
Title Bipolar WINTER (Volume 1 of 3)
Author Samuel David Steiner
Publisher Tablo Pty Ltd (July 3, 2020)
ISBN-13 978-1649692139
Hardcover 286 pages
Language English

Mind-bending Suspense Thriller

I love a great thriller with an edge of suspense. I also love reading historical fiction. “Bipolar Winter” fits both of these.

From the start, the characters whom Steiner developed in-depth, jumped off the page into action and didn’t let up until the very end.

Steiner did an incredible job formulating the characters who were real and that you felt like you knew. The pairing of Aldo and Allison is perfect in this book. One plays off the other in their investigation proceeds.

The plot isn’t predictable and is amazing as the characters weave in and out of twists and turns to uncover the truth long-held by religious doctrine as they question the reality of their discovery and the impact that it might have on the Catholic Church.

At times, my heart raced in some of the most dramatic scenes. (You’ll have to read the book to find out because I don’t want to give a spoiler alert).

I especially loved Steiner’s writing style — he used imagery and painted distinctive scenes throughout. I also love the fact that instead of overusing dialogue tags as he said, she said, Steiner masterfully engaged the reader through dialogue and the characters’ actions. That was a bonus for me as I never lost sight of who was speaking; that is how well-written the book is. When a reader knows by dialogue which character is talking, without dialogue tags, you know you have a special book in your hands. This race against time is sure to please readers as it did me.

Overall I found the book to be mind-bending suspense thriller as the twists and turns came in this thought-provoking novel and had me thinking of the complexity that Steiner wrote raising the question of, “What if?” The implication of the rawest truth level if the plot were true, and it could be, is mindblowing.

I absolutely recommend this book without any reservation. It will keep you on the edge of your seat.

This thriller delivers and if I could give a higher rating that a five-star I would. I can’t wait for the sequel from Steiner. I’ll forever be one of his fans.

Review by Aurelia Dante
Reviewed on September 15, 2020
Title Bipolar WINTER (Volume 1 of 3)
Author Samuel David Steiner
Publisher Tablo Pty Ltd (July 3, 2020)
ISBN-13 978-1649692139
Hardcover 286 pages
Language English

A THRILLING AND FASCINATING BOOK!

Bipolar Winter is a fast-paced thriller that bowls along at breakneck speed, written in a simple yet vivid cinematic style it should appeal to anyone who enjoys mysteries and action stories.
But it is also so much more than that. It is a fictionalised account based on experiences of the author Samuel Steiner and contains many hair-raising revelations. Samuel was raised a 7th day Adventist and was expected to be inaugurated as a leading member of the church until he discovered how corrupt the governing élite had become and left. He was then persecuted by the leadership for daring to defy them.

The story covers a great deal of ground both geographically and historically and operates on a very large canvas.
The hero, Aldo, an Italian-American PhD student specialising in religious history, with a gift for forensically detailed research, is unexpectedly recruited by Pope Benedict XVI to investigate various goings on in Argentina involving certain 7th day Adventists. A shy, bookish young man he is a most unlikely candidate but a very sympathetic character. He is helped along the way by a beautiful young lady, Allison, a Mormon who also happens to be a secret agent! She is temperamentally his opposite being a very feisty, independent and assertive young woman. Their romance gently unfolds beneath all the action, adding depth to the narrative.

The revelations contained within this book are truly mind blowing and it is up to the reader to decide how much they want to believe. The action travels from Italy to South America to the USA, never letting the pace falter. At the same time, we travel backwards and forwards in history as the background details to the story are gradually revealed.
The author is clearly a devoutly religious man who still empathizes with the original essence of the 7th day Adventist faith and is dismayed at how corrupt the leadership has become and how much they have strayed from the original teachings of the visionary founder, Ellen White, a woman blessed with the gift of prophecy. Therefore, this book should also appeal to anyone with a strong religious faith but particularly to fundamentalist Christians. It even contains a prophecy by Ellen White, apparently relating to the presidency of Donald Trump no less, and which may be very relevant to events currently unfolding in America and to the Q-Anon movement. It is also the kind of story that would appeal to fans of the Da Vinci Code.
I very much enjoyed it because I love historical and religious mysteries and conspiracy-based thrillers. I especially love reading something that is outlandish but just might be true!
The story begins in 1491 with the seven-year-old Martin Luther receiving a secret visit from Pope Innocent VIII who intends to recruit and train him to become the firebrand monk who ignites the Reformation. So already history is turned on its head—the Catholic Church began the Reformation! The reasons for this are contained within a secret policy known as Septem Montes—named after the seven hills on which Rome was built—which is designed to unfold over several centuries.

Since Bipolar Winter is to be published in three parts we will have to wait for the full implications of Septem Montes to be revealed—all we know is that Aldo is also recruited in 2013 as part of the Septem Montes team just as Martin Luther was the initiating agent all those centuries ago.
Aldo and Allison—working alongside various government agencies—race against time to thwart a gamut of particularly devilish plans.
Into the mix are thrown several other ingredients. The 7thday Adventists would seem to have been involved in many dubious operations over the years, at which point in the story the reader may become a little sceptical. But then we only have to check out Elon Musk implanting microchips in the brain to transmit neurological messages, or the Bill Gates Covid-19 vaccine shot which simultaneously microchips the recipient, to realise that strange and improbable things do occur!

The book is very exciting and enjoyable, and even if the reader might find some of it highly implausible it is still an entertaining and fun experience. It is certainly not a run-of-the-mill action thriller and that is why it appeals to me.

I personally can’t wait to find out what happens in the next instalment!

Review by Jennifer Hall
Reviewed on August 16, 2020
Title Bipolar WINTER (Volume 1 of 3)
Author Samuel David Steiner
Publisher Tablo Pty Ltd (July 3, 2020)
ISBN-13 978-1649692139
Hardcover 286 pages
Language English

Get ready for a thrill ride!

Bipolar WINTER is recommended reading for anyone who enjoys historical fiction. Steiner has written a compelling story with a sympathetic protagonist. I am eager to read volume two. In the meantime, I’ll keep wondering what is real and what is fiction.

Review by Xica van Dahl
Reviewed on August 18, 2020
Title Bipolar WINTER (Volume 1 of 3)
Author Samuel David Steiner
Publisher Tablo Pty Ltd (July 3, 2020)
ISBN-13 978-1649692139
Hardcover 286 pages
Language English

Powerful and Complex Tale

When Arnold J Rimmer, second technician of the mining ship Red Dwarf in the comedy series of the same name, flippantly mentioned in Episode Six of Series Three that his parents belonged to ‘The Seventh-day Advent Hoppists’, little did the chuckling audience think that the real, pan-global Seventh-day Adventist religious sect might be something much more sinister than they ever imagined.

Exactly how sinister is the powerful and complex tale which unfolds in this book, the magic carpet of narrative whisking us through time and across the continents to expose some very dark secrets indeed.

Full of action, the story doesn’t keep you waiting around, setting the prologue in medieval Germany after a significant witch trial, moving off to 21st century Italy to meet our hero, and rapidly on to a whole host of locations and eras, including World War II Europe and 19th Century America. For anyone who, like me, is fascinated by both history and travel, as well as a thoroughly good mystery, this book is a goldmine.
The writing is fluent, bringing the people and places to life in full technicolour, the reader witnessing everything as if part of the scene, so that the fast-moving tale becomes all-absorbing and, indeed, difficult to put down.
The leading figure, Aldo Lombardi, makes an interesting and very likeable hero, being quiet, scholarly, and slightly self-deprecating, but, of course, capable when it counts, however much that may surprise him!

The historical characters become people we might know ourselves, both good and bad, the attention given to their fears and concerns enabling us to understand the reasons for their actions much more fully than we might otherwise do from a simple factual account, which is where good writing like this can teach us so much.
One aspect of many religions which runs through this story, the prophecies and predictions, is in itself a fascinating topic.
Religions are usually founded by people who are considered prophets in the eyes of their followers. Their prophecies and teachings are an important part of the faith. In Bipolar Winter, we see how influential these prophecies can be for a religion’s followers, especially with regard to the Seventh-day Adventist Church. How many have been fulfilled? Are any close to fruition?
Is it important? Well, the investigations in this book certainly persuade us it’s a topic well worth examining.

The machinations of the plot delve deep into the current competition for global power amongst major world religions and the ways various groupings manoeuvre themselves into what they consider to be a stronger or safer position. A facet of this is the power which lies behind the multiple differing Christian groups, for me one of the most interesting aspects of the novel.
The might and influence of a religion can depend on the sheer number of its followers, as well as the type of follower and the behaviours they manifest, plus, of course, the amount of wealth the particular denomination possesses. Importantly, where does this wealth come from, and how is it invested? One thing’s for sure, prophets make profits.
Money is power, so affluent religious sects can do a lot of things for the benefit of the community at large, but, importantly, what counts as a benefit? Do the ends justify the means? A good question; the characters in the novel draw their conclusions from the staggering evidence they find, leaving the reader thirsting for the next part of this intricate and riveting saga.
To my mind, Bipolar Winter would make a really good action movie or even a series. It has all the ingredients.

Review by Name Withheld
Reviewed on August 12, 2020
Title Bipolar WINTER (Volume 1 of 3)
Author Samuel David Steiner
Publisher Tablo Pty Ltd (July 3, 2020)
ISBN-13 978-1649692139
Hardcover 286 pages
Language English

The Blooming Relationship

“The church he had been raised in was slowly going to become a mere shell of what Sister White had intended. […] She had written about her true doctrines being ignored, of how blinded men would lead the church astray. And how future generations of followers would never question what they were being taught, nor realize how thoroughly and completely they had been deceived by the very leadership they trusted.” (Steiner, 2020, pp. 155-156)

This is the quote that echoed at the back of my head whilst reading the fictional piece by Samuel David Steiner: Bipolar Winter. How far are we willing to trust our teachings? To exploit them beyond their intended purpose? To stray from our true values in order to feed our own greed?
Released in 2020, the book was based on Steiner’s extensive research and experiences involving the Seventh-day Adventist Church and reveals astounding facts, theories and revelations that most of us could have never thought possible. All whilst keeping the reader hooked and delved deep into the narrative.
Steiner, being a former member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church himself, uses traditional fiction and storytelling to bring real questions and ideas into the reader’s mind about the intentions and influences of the Church. He presents an excellent case of realistic fiction, where fictional, action-packed scenarios are blended with real moral and ethical dilemmas that have shaped our history and divided our communities.

Despite including several points of views, narratives and time periods, the book focuses on two main characters: Aldo Lombardi and Allison Gillespie. Both are on an action-packed mission to discover the secrets of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, taking them all over the world and putting them in various scenarios that test their abilities and faith. A small, albeit pleasant aspect of their story can also be found in the blooming relationship between them, which never failed to put a smile on my face.
The book maintains the same, fast-paced rhythm until the end, keeping us on our toes and constantly learning more without stalling on a specific scenario or idea. The plotline and conflict itself are not heavily defined, making the narrative feel somewhat dispersed and unfocused. I find this to be the only weakness in the book. However, it did not intervene with my reading or comprehension of the story, which is crucial to the success of the story, which is why I don’t consider it a problem.

A key ingredient in Steiner’s story are the chapters that go back to the past. They are scattered throughout the book and bring an original account of real-life events through the eyes of historical characters, such as Martin Luther and Ellen G. White.
I found these chapters quite exhilarating, as Steiner not only gave me the chance to get a glimpse of the past in a new, creative way, but he also brought the story together and gave the main plotline a deeper meaning. These chapters revealed how the conflict had evolved over the centuries and how the actions of the past affected the future. The religious groups imbedded into the story are shown as ancient, influential and ever changing, which is strikingly accurate to our reality; quite often, religion is used to manipulate and control others into submission, straying it far from its intended “divine” purpose: providing faith, closeness and purpose to communities.
This leads me back to the quote I included at the beginning of this analysis, which I think illustrates the essence of the book. In the center of every well-written fiction, there is a hidden message for all those who read. It was clear to me since the beginning of the novel that the story is centered around religion, corruption and the abuse of power, but it wasn’t until I began reading that I understood the approach Steiner took.

Without falling into any traditional pitfalls associated with the topic, Bipolar Winter explores how religious institutions have evolved and manipulated their beliefs, actions and followers in order to achieve their personal agenda. It questions the way that these societies (mainly the Seventh-day Adventist Church) pursue their goals to inhumane extents and sheds a light on the devastating consequences. Whether you read it for your interest in history, religion or simply fiction, the book accommodates for all perspectives and delivers a powerful point.
Personally, I found the topic and the research behind the book to be its main strength even above the characters or the narrative itself, especially since it is a centuries-old issue that has plagued hundreds of other institutions. It is a struggle that everyone, regardless of their religious beliefs, can understand and somehow identify to. It becomes even more shocking since it includes real historical aspects, which connects it to our real world. And even though the premise has a certain “conspiracy-theory” feeling to it, the book never felt like an outrageous declaration that swayed more towards the sci-fi. On the contrary: it felt like a puzzle that joined realistic, investigated pieces and experiences to form an open-ended picture that invites you to form your own conclusion. As I read, I found myself able to decide whether or not to believe the theories proposed by the author. Being non-religious myself, I was pleasantly surprised at how tolerant and open-minded the book was constructed; Not only did it teach me about the bases of the religious organizations mentioned, it also allowed me to truly dive into the minds of the characters and empathize with them in order to understand the importance of their faith… and the power of those who control it.

With that being said, I definitely recommend reading Bipolar Winter. It has a powerful statement and conflict at the core of an entertaining and adventure-packed story with very likeable characters, it teaches the reader about the beliefs, history, actions and consequences of several religious institutions without discriminating and it stays true to the real, personal experiences of the author. For these reasons, I believe anyone with an interest in the history of religion with a touch of adventure will sure enjoy Steiner’s novel.

Review by Roy M. Portugal
Reviewed on July 25, 2020
Title Bipolar WINTER (Volume 1 of 3)
Author Samuel David Steiner
Publisher Tablo Pty Ltd (July 3, 2020)
ISBN-13 978-1649692139
Hardcover 286 pages
Language English

A Complex Web of Intrigue

Are you sure you can tell the difference between fact and fiction?
Bipolar Winter by Samuel David Steiner will have you second-guessing what you think you know every step of the way. Meticulously researched, the strong, easy-to-read narrative seamlessly blurs the lines to such an extent I found myself constantly making notes to check out if I was reading a fact or just enjoying the product of an imaginative mind.
Based upon religion, but by no means a religious story, I feel a reader’s previous background knowledge and awareness, or keen interest in, modern day politics would be an advantage. However, that isn’t to say that if your knowledge is scant and your awareness or interest in modern day politics is only passing this book has nothing to offer you. On the contrary, if you are the kind of person with an enquiring mind, who questions what is happening and why, Bipolar Winter will pique your interest and urge you to delve deeper into the mysteries of today’s political world. We all see the smoke, but it’s where the flames are that’s important.

After reading this, my take is that that nothing ever changes, and I was able to draw clear parallels with what is happening now with the so-called deep state and events of the past. Only the names of the actors have changed. Greed and a maniacal desire for power and control have always been with us (and, sadly, probably always will), as clearly illustrated in Steiner’s storyline, and through his skilful narrative, he paints some pretty frightening and worrisome pictures. Here I go back to my opening sentence. What is fact and what is fiction? Who do we believe to tell us the truth? If the reality of today’s technology, unimaginable by billions of us even twenty years ago when it was no doubt in the pipeline, is anything to go by, who is to say that the medical experimentation and so forth in Bipolar Winter aren’t at the same stage and will become commonplace by 2040? Without getting into conspiracy theories, there is evidence all around, and Steiner’s book certainly brings that evidence square to mind, provoking much deep thought and discussion about where we, as the human race, are headed.

The gripping prologue takes the reader through the historical origins of the book’s plot, setting the scene for this modernistic tale, although there are a further couple of chapters which necessarily delve back into the past in order for the reader to make sense of what the protagonists are doing. While some may prefer not to be transported from one time period to another, I thought Steiner handled it very well, and given the complexity of the storyline, I can’t see how else he could have imparted the information in such a timely manner.
The book sets off at a rapid gallop – absolutely no padding or fillers – drawing the reader in from the first paragraph. Every page is stuffed full of information to progress the story. It’s what I would call a full read. That’s similar to when you’ve had a really satisfying meal and you sit back contentedly, mentally reliving all the culinary delights that have just passed your lips. It’s been two days since I read Bipolar Winter and I’m still digesting the contents, such was the richness of the meal served by Steiner!

I don’t know how many books Samuel Steiner has written before, but he is an excellent writer, telling the tale with swashbuckling verve and confidence. There are, however, two things that concerned me, although they’re certainly not exclusive to Steiner. 1) There are a lot of acronyms, and 2) There are two women with similar names. As for the acronyms, Steiner does tell us what they stand for when first mentioned, but I found it difficult to remember what they all stood for, and if he’d written them out in full every time, I’d have been happier. Regarding the names, in the final chapter there are two women – Allison and Amelia – who get into conversation, and I had to stop and reread a couple of times, as I kept confusing them and wasn’t sure who was speaking. I had no problems elsewhere with other characters. However, they are small points and they didn’t impede my enjoyment of the book.
While the book is heavily into political intrigue, being a romantic at heart, I was pleased to see a little love interest included. Although I thought he handled it very well at the beginning, for me, when it ‘blossomed’ towards the end, I felt it became a little cumbersome and rushed. But that apart, the romantic interest helps round out the two characters concerned, making them seem more like people I might know.

Overall, Samuel Steiner weaves a complex web of intrigue that not only demands your full attention, but will also provoke a lot of discussion. Seventh Day Adventists (SDA) probably won’t give the book the time of day, but they, like so many other religious orders and cults, need to be put under the spotlight and brought out into the open. Is this book anti- SDA? I guess it could be construed that way, but what Steiner writes is what he knows, based on his research and his own personal experiences. According to his note on the final page, it is a fictionalized account of his story. I leave it up to you to decide whether he is using Seventh Day Adventism as an example to make a point or whether he is anti-SDA and wants to see them exposed. Whichever it is, I highly recommend this gripping book. And if that wasn’t enough, the final page carries the legend ‘To be continued’. I can’t wait!