Fray Alejandro lives in Mision de Santa Delores, an idyllic Spanish mission located in southern California. But in the eighteenth century, the mission collapsed, and only now are people beginning to unearth it. But caught in the middle of its unearthing are a Mexican shopkeeper who moved to America to preach the gospel, a pastor who feels he is failing his congregation, and a desperate man who feels he married the wrong woman.
Most of the book is spent in the past, telling from Alejandro's perspective how the mission collapsed and why. It eventually transitions to the present within each chapter, but not in a very obvious way.
Lost Missionis a very hard book to review because it is spread out over time. In the past, it spans a century, yet in the present, only a few months. The vague transitions between past and present confused me at first. I do believe the book could have been better with more obvious transitions.
The best thing about Lost Mission is that Dickson set out to make the book full of imperfect characters, and he succeeded in doing so. They all suffer consequences for their wrong choices in the end. I love plots that are set up in this sort of way.
But why then did I not make it Elite? Here's why: Dickson made mostly everything turn out perfectly in the end. However, he disguises it very well. But he does nonetheless.
In the past, I have not fully known what to think about Athol's works. I like some of them; I scratched my head at the others. But there is a reason why Athol has never received a five star award from us: he has a penchant for making things turn out unrealistically perfect in the end. This is why his works appeal to the public.
Unfortunately, Lost Mission is one of those such works. I hate to say it. This book had a lot of potential, and I do not regret reading it. I only wish I could have made it Elite.