17 March 2013

Book Review: "The Sanctuary" by Ted Dekker

Synopsis: Danny Hansen, a "vigilante priest," is trapped in a correctional institute in California for allegedly murdering two men.  Renee Gilmore, his significant other, gets a box with a cut-off finger delivered to her house, along with a message that says Danny is in danger.  Scared out of her mind, she contacts Keith, a former cop, to help her get to Danny before it's too late.  At first, Renee and Keith give in to "Sicko"'s demands...but, he goes too far when he asks them to kill someone.  Will they be able to save Danny?

Story: 5/5
Ted Dekker is a master writer, and this book proves it.  The novel makes a good point: When does "the law" go too far? Why is it now illegal to do what was considered "normal" in years past?  Add to that how gripping and involving The Sanctuary is, and it's a great yarn.

Writing: 5/5
Again, Ted Dekker does great here, as usual.  The narration, whether first-person or third-person, is wonderfully done, and the details are spot-on.

Moral Content: 2.5/5
Mr. Dekker may be a Christian author, but his books are edgier than, say, ones by Beverly Lewis and Karen Kingsbury.  Alongside a bit of sexual content--that is, rape and genitalia are discussed--there is extreme violence: some of it intense, a little of it bloody, and all of it creepy.  Drunkenness is also mentioned.  Those who are faint of heart and/or under the age of fifteen should avoid this one.

Conclusion: Ted Dekker has made a name for himself in the secular publishing world, something that has proved hard for other Christian authors.  Fans of his works will probably like this, but, you would have to read The Priest's Graveyard to understand some of it.  It's creepy and a bit extreme, but, by now, everyone knows to expect that from Mr. Dekker, whether or not they like his works.

Score: 4/5

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