Resurrecting Tobias: Remarkable Book by William D. Holland

Updated on February 20, 2019
Peggy W profile image

I live in Houston, and I have worked as a nurse. My interests include art, traveling, reading, gardening, cooking, and our wonderful pets.

Resurrecting Tobias belongs on everyone's bookshelf.
Resurrecting Tobias belongs on everyone's bookshelf. | Source

Book Review

This 508-page paperback novel by William D. Holland (a well-known writer known as Bill Holland to readers on HubPages) weighs in at one-pound, ten-ounces. It is not the weight of the book that is notable, but his well-chosen words which will persist in your mind long after reading Resurrecting Tobias ends. At least that is how it affected me.

Good authors have a way of not only describing people, places, and things with precise particulars that make the words resonate but they also quickly draw one into the story. Bill Holland accomplishes that in spades!

This riveting story unfolds in the prologue of the novel with the horrific details of a woman who is stoned to death in Iran. The gruesome images of that defenseless woman subjected to crowds watching each cast stone doing its part in her slow and painful demise, while most of them viewed the spectacle as entertainment, grab a reader's attention immediately.

That is where we first meet Toby, the main character of the book.

Just imagine being pummeled with sharp stones such as these!
Just imagine being pummeled with sharp stones such as these!

Childhood Friends for Life

While Toby King is the primary character of this book, his childhood associations with Pete Carnahan and Maria Turner are also essential and end up lasting a lifetime for the three of them. It is more than a mere friendship. These three people genuinely care for one another and grow to love each other.

It is the intertwining of their lives that creates a compelling story. They form bonds that prove resilient even when their paths go in different directions.

As readers, we also grow to care for each of these folks and root for them as they transcend their trials of life.

Toby, Pete, and Maria meet when they are children.
Toby, Pete, and Maria meet when they are children.

Surviving Trials and Tribulations

Few people progress through life obstacle-free. Whether it is our family members, friends, acquaintances, or strangers who we pass on a street, we all, at times, face moments which can be life-altering. Circumstances can dictate a harsh reality for some people. Assaults can come without warning. Sometimes those hardships are self-inflicted.

All three of our characters endure stumbling blocks, some more serious than others, and we are with them all the way through the pages of this book hoping that they survive and come out on top.

Sometimes we are presented with obstacles in our path of life.
Sometimes we are presented with obstacles in our path of life.

A Hard Lesson Learned

Toby is a successful author, who at one point seems to have it all. Despite that, he has his devils which disrupt his life in a significant way. That severance from his usual style of living affects Pete and Maria, as well as himself, while he pays a dear price for the cataclysmic accident that takes place because of his addiction to alcohol.

Our Toby may be a flawed man. Who of us is perfect? The price he has to pay gives him plenty of time for introspection as well as healing. It is a harsh lesson but one that ends up aiding others as he stitches his life back together.

Impactful Readings

Before his incarceration and after, Toby gives readings in venues all across the country, often accompanied by his lifetime pal Pete. The words of his readings are impactful and strike to the core of who we indeed are as human beings and how we interact with others. Contemplative ruminations cover just about every subject imaginable.

Toby's musings of the human condition take the forms of discerning logic, acute perception, considerable intuition, reflective thinking, and meditative reasoning. His wording is unvarnished.

Readers are forced to face subjects such as bullying, rape, abject poverty, prejudice, war, sex trafficking, drug abuse, illness, homelessness and more. While many of us realize that those conditions exist, perhaps even understanding some of those issues firsthand, Tony makes those matters resound in our minds like an arrow hitting dead center on a target.

All is not doom and gloom. While this novel takes us on a journey which crosses off many miles of travel and space of time, it also shows how our three characters transcend that time and space with hopefulness, fearlessness, endurance, and everlasting love.

It gives all of us a reason for optimism in the days to come. Our days ahead need never be cemented by our past. It is up to us to make purposeful changes, if necessary, and look forward towards a brighter future.

Resurrecting Tobias is a book that readers will always remember!

Resurrecting Tobias
Resurrecting Tobias

Reading Resurrecting Tobias will strike home in unexpected ways. This author is a fantastic wordsmith. We end up caring about his characters, and hopefully, our shared humanity as we turn the pages of this impactful book. I heartily recommend reading this novel.


This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

Questions & Answers

    © 2019 Peggy Woods


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      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        5 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Patricia,

        It is an amazing book and one that you will think about long after you have finished reading it. Sending positive thoughts, energy, and prayers your way.

      • pstraubie48 profile image

        Patricia Scott 

        5 months ago from North Central Florida

        I still have not read this Peggy. But with your endorsement I know that I must. After I do I will let you know and am sure will thank you for leading me to it. Angels and blessings, hugs and love headed to Houston this evening ps

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        9 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Robert,

        Powerful is definitely one word to describe this book. Reading this book gives people much to think about long after the last page is turned. I hope you get a chance to read Resurrecting Tobias.

      • Robert Sacchi profile image

        Robert Sacchi 

        9 months ago

        Thank you for posting. This seems a powerful book.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        10 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Adrienne,

        Bill Holland deserves much credit for writing this fabulous book. I am certain that you will enjoy reading it. Thanks for your comment.

      • alexadry profile image

        Adrienne Farricelli 

        10 months ago

        A book I will have on my wish list as soon as I have some free time this summer. Thanks for reviewing it. Kudos to Bill Holland!

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        11 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hello manatita44,

        You are so correct. Ressurection and eternal life is the bright beacon that calls most of us as we make our way through this life. Thanks for your comment.

      • manatita44 profile image


        11 months ago from london

        A powerful write, Peggy and on a book by the master craftsman himself. I suppose we all carry our 'Toby's' in some form or another and yes, this world can be a brutal place. Beautiful to know that we can be resurrected and turn to eternal life. An eloquent piece!

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        12 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Patricia,

        Yes, Bill's book is a real page-turner and one that will resonate in your mind long after you have finished reading it. I'll look forward to hearing from you via email. Sending good wishes your way.

      • pstraubie48 profile image

        Patricia Scott 

        12 months ago from North Central Florida

        O what a great review of this novel by our very own Bill. You nailed it when you mention how he engages his readers not just in this writing but in every thing he shares with us I hope to read this story. It sounds like something that will be a page turner Hoping all is good with you...I plan to email you soon and I think of you often Angels are headed to Houston to your house this morning Please forgive punctuation errors----my laptop has some issues ps

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        12 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Nell,

        If this is the reminder you need to purchase Bill's book, then my post served a good purpose. You will be happy when you purchase and read Resurrecting Tobias. Of that, I am certain.

      • Nell Rose profile image

        Nell Rose 

        12 months ago from England

        Hi Peggy, I keep meaning to buy it, but then totally forget! He is great isn't he? Thanks for the reminder.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        12 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Dale,

        You and your wife are in for a treat when you read this book by our fellow HubPages writer, Bill Holland. He is an amazing author!

      • GetitScene profile image

        Dale Anderson 

        12 months ago from The High Seas

        OK, this book is going on the list of what to read next. I already sent this to my wife and she is excited to get her hands on it. We are both avid readers so this will go on our shelf soon. Thanks for bringing it to our attention.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        12 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Audrey,

        Yes, we are blessed to have Bill in our HP family. I am certain that you will enjoy his book as much as I did.

      • vocalcoach profile image

        Audrey Hunt 

        12 months ago from Idyllwild Ca.

        Thank you for this excellent review of Bill's book. I will order it tomorrow! Bill is such a talent. How blessed we are to be connected with him in our hub page family.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Rajan,

        Without giving too much of the plot away, I am grateful to know that you thought this review of Bill's book was compelling. Reading the book is an experience you will not soon forget. Thanks for your comment.

      • rajan jolly profile image

        Rajan Singh Jolly 

        13 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

        It is a treat to read such an in-depth and compelling review of a book as this. Thank you so much.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hello Nithya,

        Toby was such an interesting character in this book of Bill's. Readers learn so much about his character, and views of life in general from his readings. It is an outstanding book that I highly recommend reading.

      • Vellur profile image

        Nithya Venkat 

        13 months ago from Dubai

        A wonderful review of Bill’s book, you have drawn us into Toby’s world and left us wanting to read the entire story.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Peg,

        I did not want to give away too many details regarding Bill's book, yet just enough to entice people to read it. It is one of the most impactful books that I have read in a long time. I feel sure that you would enjoy it.

      • PegCole17 profile image

        Peg Cole 

        13 months ago from Northeast of Dallas, Texas

        Well-thought out and impactful review of Bill's book, Peggy. I saw the prologue on Bill's weekly mailbag and was touched by the vivid description of the stoning. With your added description of the depth of the book, I'll have to add this one to my reading list.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Aurelio,

        Yes, our good HubPages buddy, Bill Holland, has written this fabulous book. I am sure that you will truly enjoy reading it.

      • alocsin profile image

        Aurelio Locsin 

        13 months ago from Orange County, CA

        I had no idea that Bill had written it. That and your recommendation prompts me to give it a read.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Mary,

        I agree with you when you said that after reading this book, it stays with you. Bill gives us much to consider!

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Liz,

        Thanks! I did not want to give away too much of the plot of this fabulous book, yet wanted people to know just what I think of it. Hope more people get to read this novel.

      • aesta1 profile image

        Mary Norton 

        13 months ago from Ontario, Canada

        Hi Peggy. Your words describe so well Bill's book and, having read the book, the words resonated so well with me. I enjoyed reading the book and the story stays with me.

      • Eurofile profile image

        Liz Westwood 

        13 months ago from UK

        This is a great review. You give enough detail and appraisal to entice the reader, but you don't give away too much of the plot to spoil the story. This looks like a very interesting read from a favourite contributor on Hub Pages.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Paula,

        Thank you so very much for the high compliments regarding the review of this book by Bill Holland. I feel the same as you do with regard to the wonder of this creation by our fellow HubPages writer and author. He is amazing!

      • fpherj48 profile image


        13 months ago from UpstateWestern,New York

        Peggy......This review has to be the very best, in-depth description of a book, ever! To read this review, is to be lured to get it into your hands immediately. Once a reader has turned the first page, they are hooked.

        On a personal note, I can safely say that the books under my belt thus far, number at least a thousand. "Resurrecting Tobias," is and may always be, right up there with the top 3. That is no shabby recommendation, nor do I give it lightly.

        Once again, Peggy, your review has blown me away. What a gift you have given our Bill, as well as the public! Paula

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Genna,

        As you wrote, Bill indeed is a gift to those of us who follow his posts on HubPages. He has undoubtedly aided many people through the years with his many answers to questions about writing.

      • Genna East profile image

        Genna East 

        13 months ago from Massachusetts, USA

        Hi Peggy. I agree with everyone here -- this is a wonderful review. Bill is one of my favorite, gifted writers, and a true gift to us all as well on Hubpages. Thank you for this! I'm off to purchase the Kindle version. :-)

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Shannon,

        I agree with you that it should be in libraries all across our nation. It should be in every home library also. I will also be recommending it to our friends. Thanks for your comment.

      • shanmarie profile image

        Shannon Henry 

        13 months ago from Texas

        Hi Peggy, what a great review!

        It's been a couple of years since I read this book, but I too loved it. I'd recommend it to anyone who enjoys stories that cut to the grit of life to the very core of what it means to be human. I recommend it often to friends looking for something to read. I think it belongs in libraries across the nation.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hello Venkatachari M,

        The shipping charges to India would probably make this book more expensive, so it is nice that you can choose the Kindle version. I am certain that you will appreciate this book as much as I did after you have read it. Bill Holland is an amazing writer! I am pleased that you enjoyed my review of his book.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Chitrangada,

        Those of us who read Bill's regular posts on HubPages already know his prowess with words, but also his helpful advice to writers. Reading this book of his was a real treat! Hope you get to read it soon.

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        13 months ago from New Delhi, India

        What a wonderful review of Bill’s novel! I hadn’t read it so far, but now I would definitely read it. We all know that Bill is an amazing writer and your review clearly reflects that.

        Thanks for sharing this!

      • Venkatachari M profile image

        Venkatachari M 

        13 months ago from Hyderabad, India

        A wonderful review of this book from Bill Holland. I always regarded Bill as one of those great writers and your review spices it up all the more. I wanted to buy and read this book many months back. Previously I tried for the paperback. But looking at the cost, I had to retreat. So, I will now buy the Kindle version which does not bear that extra burden of shipping charges and customs expenses.

        You have done a great job by reviewing this book in such a beautiful way.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Doris,

        That makes me happy that my review inspired you to purchase Bill's book, and I am glad that you are enjoying it. I will have to try using the electronic versions of books sometime. So far, I have always preferred holding books, turning the pages, and reading them that way. You make an excellent point about how convenient the electronic versions are.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Susan,

        I obviously agree with you in loving this book. I would be surprised to hear that anyone would not find it absorbing and thought-provoking.

      • MizBejabbers profile image

        Doris James MizBejabbers 

        13 months ago from Beautiful South

        Peggy, you review was partially instrumental in my buying Resurrecting Tobias" and now I'm reading it. I say "partially" because there were statements made in comments that also influenced me. I agree that I really like it. I had bought and read Billy the Kid Chronicles: The Blood Red Russian Moon a year or two ago, and it was a little gritty for me.

        I'm less than 25% into Resurrecting Tobias and I'm hooked on the characters and the story. I like the w\ay that Bill handled the story, the flashbacks, and the musings about society.

        I say 25% because I bought the Kindle version so I can read myself sleepy at night without disturbing my husband whose heart condition requires more sleep than I do. I also prefer electronic versions because I can download them to my phone and the book I'm reading is always with me anytime I get marooned somewhere boring, like a doctor's office. So I just love being able to pick up Resurrecting Tobias and forgetting that I'm somewhere I'd rather not be. Bill is a terrific writer, and your review is the best! I couldn't have said it as well.

      • Just Ask Susan profile image

        Susan Zutautas 

        13 months ago from Ontario, Canada

        Loved this book!

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi GlenR,

        I know that you will be as enthralled with this book as I was when you get around to reading it. You must read many books each year since you participate in four reading groups. Your entire group should read this book. They would have much to discuss afterward!

      • Glenis Rix profile image


        13 months ago from UK

        An excellent review, Peggy. I'm enticed and adding Bill's book to my reading list. Though it may be a while before I get around to reading it, as I am now a member of four different reading groups and speed-reading my way through four books.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Bill,

        Your novel is amazing. The characters are integral to the book and memorable, but what I liked most about it and will think about long after the last page, are the readings done by Tony. That is where your true feelings about the state of humanity resonate.

        I can understand why you think that this creation of yours was a work of love. You put so much time and effort into this, and it is a distinct reflection of you as a person.

        We all need more understanding as well as respect. You showered us with ideas of the many needs that still need addressing "to form a more perfect union" in our country as well as improving situations around the world.

        It was my great pleasure to write this review, and I hope it brings more attention to your masterful writing.

      • billybuc profile image

        Bill Holland 

        13 months ago from Olympia, WA

        I read this last night, Peggy, but I was too tired to comment. I'm awake now. :)

        This was so sweet of you, my friend. Thank you from the bottom of my old heart. This book was a work of love. If I'm known for one thing as a writer, I want it to be this book. In many ways this is as good as I can be, and I am proud of it. It's icing on the cake to have someone else praise it, so thank you for making my day and giving me confirmation and affirmation.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi Pamela,

        I agree with you that Toby is representative of many people who struggle with one problem or another. It is a good ending given all the circumstances. It is great that you have also read this book of Bill's. It was the first one of his that I chose to read and I was genuinely impressed! He cuts to the chase with his words and thoughts.

      • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

        Peggy Woods 

        13 months ago from Houston, Texas

        Hi FlourishAnyway,

        That is the mere beginning of where this story unfolds, but the stoning of that woman certainly grabs one's attention!

      • Pamela99 profile image

        Pamela Oglesby 

        13 months ago from Sunny Florida

        Hi Peggy, You have written a great review of this book, which I read and agree with you. This main character (Toby) is not one demensional at all. He is a person struggling through life as many of us have done. Great artilcle.

      • FlourishAnyway profile image


        13 months ago from USA

        What a dear you are to review this for Bill. He is a good writer. Wow, the premise of this with the stoning of the woman is pretty unforgettable. This sounds exciting,


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