First, I would like to apologize.
I really planned to read another book BESIDES one written by Ted Dekker, for variety's sake. I promise, that was my intention. In fact, Superman is just finishing up The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel, and I thought that would be an excellent read (I read it years ago but should do so again as a refresher). However…I found a package in my mailbox yesterday.
It was a book I had ordered, so I could have on hand for the near future. Three, by Ted Dekker.
And I had just finished Chaos, the last of the Lost Books series.
Sigh. I started Three this morning.
Lo siento mucho.
You can look forward to a Three review, probably next week, but for now, let me quickly cover the Lost Books series, which includes Chosen, Infidel, Renegade and Chaos. The books are actually a young adult series, but as they answer some of the questions I still had from the Paradise novels, I figured they’d be good to read – and they were.
These books do not have as much vivid description and subtleness as Dekker’s others in the Books of History grouping (which includes the Circle trilogy, the Paradise novels, and the Lost Books series), probably because they are for young adults, but they still had excellent storylines. The only major problem I had with them was the obviousness – most of the time, I knew what was coming.
Chosen begins the tale, starting at the time between Black and Red in the Middle Forest, where Thomas Hunter’s “dream world” is. Johnis, Silvie, Darsal, and Billos, teens around sixteen and seventeen years old, are chosen to be leaders in their war against the enemy, the Horde. While on their first mission, which is really a test, the four are instructed to take on a new mission, one kept secret from Thomas but one that must be accomplished to save not only their world but the other world (our Earth) as well.
Throughout the four books, we learn about each of the characters, their weaknesses and strengths and their love – not only for each other but for even their enemies, which is sometimes seen by others as a vulnerability. The four are impulsive, quick-tempered, and determined, but their sacrifices and love are what the books most focus on.
Johnis is the idealist of the group, the one who is the most impulsive but also the most curious, which, really, is what keeps him on the straight and narrow. He eventually (I really don’t think this spoils anything, because it’s easy to see) falls in love with Silvie, who, in Chosen, defends him when Darsal and Billos, who are older and stronger, pick on him or criticize his ideas.
I love that these four have such strong, varying personalities. Darsal, while beautiful and cunning, is bitter from childhood pains, and Billos is her hero, though his decisions from the beginning are anything but wise.
Chaos really brings everything together in a nice, neat (dare I say it?) Circle. Everything was a little too put together in the last two pages, but I can understand that they were written for young adults, and that’s probably the best ending for that age group. Plus, one scene that I really had looked forward to was omitted, though Dekker made it clear that that particular scene would take place in the near future.
If I had to pick a favorite, it would be Chaos, though I was not sure when I first started reading it if I would like this final book. It was written with much consideration, I feel, and the characters have evolved nicely and in a way that is totally in their personalities.
As for my least favorite, I suppose that would be Chosen, the first book, mainly because it’s just setting the stage for events to come – and I was ready for action!
Keeping with his eeire style that I love, Dekker writes these books with just enough creepiness to make you want to watch a short comedy before bedtime, but, even so, I think they’re appropriate for young adults, and, if anyone is reading the Circle trilogy and Paradise novels, I think these would be an excellent choice AFTER those six books.
Now…on to Three!