Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Book Review: Burn by Ted Dekker

I actually received a copy of this book when I went to The Gathering last year. All who attended got an advanced copy of Burn and several other freebies. I told myself I would read the book right away, but I put it on my bookshelf and forgot about it until now, when I saw it had come out in stores (I know, I know, how could I forget about a Ted Dekker book? Bad girl!).

The book begins with an intriguing scene between the main character, Janeal Mikkado and the sinister Salazar Sanso, who offers Janeal a million dollars to save her father's life. When Janeal attempts to do what Sanso has demanded, everything goes wrong and Janeal and her two best friends are fighting for their lives in a fire set by Sanso and his shady companions.

Fifteen years later, we see Janeal in New York, successful and oblivious to what has happened to her friends (she thinks they both died in the fire). Her best friend, Katie, has opened a halfway house for women. Her boyfriend, Robert, has become a DEA agent who has spent the last fifteen years chasing Sanso. He succeeds in capturing him, only to lose him again. The three find themselves in a struggle for survival as Sanso perseveres in his wicked schemes.

The book slows a little in the middle, then, just as I was ready to give up on it, it had quite a twist. Dekker (and Erin Healy, co-author) gives us a turn as he gets inside the minds of the trio and presents us with an inner conflict which becomes the focus of the rest of the book. There is a disappointing climax and ending. I felt a little cheated when I finished the book.

I found this book a little hard to read because of the turn that was made and what seemed to me to take away from the suspense. I understand why the authors wrote this into the book, but it only served to confuse me and caused me to lose what little interest I still had in the book.

I am looking forward to reading The Bride Collector, which is due out in April. It looks like it will be more like Boneman's Daughters, which I think is one of my favorite Ted Dekker books. He is a great author (in fact one of my top ten fiction writers), but the Dekker/Healy team has not been, in my opinion, much of a success. If you have never read any of Dekker's books, you would do well to read Boneman's Daughters, or Adam, one of his older books.

By the way, if you are a Ted Dekker fan and you get a chance to go to The Gathering 2.0, which is scheduled to be in Chicago and Dallas in April, then you should go. Last year was great. I highly recommend it. Mr. Dekker is a nice man and his wife is a sweetheart. If it wasn't so far away, I would go.

Tolle lege!


Jennifer @ Mrs. Q: Book Addict said...

I added you to my blog roll, thanks for visiting my blog!

Nicola said...

In totally agree that the twist does make the book turn in a new direction and suddenly the book is no longer a suspense. It's really hard to label this one as a particular genre. But like you said I liked it quite a bit more than you!

I'll have to take a look for Adam. The only other Dekker I have at home now is Thr3e.