Two teenage friends, Austin and Christy, both with “forgotten” childhoods get accidentally lost in a mental hospital. You’d think once they could explain their situation, all would be fine and they’d leave and go on their way.
But this is a Ted Dekker novel.
The hospital authorities re-admit them both as Scott and Alice. So who are they? Are they Austin and Christy or Scott and Alice? Dekker weaves his clever story telling skills in a thrill-of-a-minute ride where even we the reader are unsure of the truth.
The truth? What is it? How can we be certain we know the truth? Why do our perceptions of our reality play such an important part in our understanding of our individual lives? Who can provide the truth, about who we are? about our childhood?
These are great questions which Dekker asks as we the confused reader try to understand what’s going on in the two protagonists lives. Are the doctors and even delightful psychiatrist Nancy really the bad guys?
Dekker challenges us beyond the story to question our own perceptions of truth.
I would have given this a ‘5’, however, the sudden intrusion of a character near the end of the novel I found to be a little contrived and somewhat fantastic. I understand now why this character was injected into the novel, but it allowed a degree of artificial resolution. Those familiar with Dekker’s “Showdown” novels will be able to relate to this character very easily, however, those new to Dekker may find it a little abrupt.
In saying that I’m keen to read the sequel to understand how Dekker develops these themes.
I read this over a series of 4 e-books which were released a week apart. I thoroughly enjoyed this process of reading the novel.
If you’re a Dekker fan, you’ll love this. And those new to his work will enjoy it’s freshness and powerful thematic premise.