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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Elyon by Ted Dekker

When we last left the Chosen Ones, Johnis was possessed by a Leedhan named Shaeda and was leading Silvie through the desert in order to destroy the Horde and steal Succrow's amulet. Also, Darsal was imprisoned by a Horde general who she feels she is falling in love with. She is doing all she can to love the Horde as Elyon told her to, but now it is coming at the cost of her life. When reunited with Johnis and Silvie, she tries to convince them to bathe in one of Elyon's lakes, but they are skeptical and blinded by Shaeda to complete the mission at hand. But the Horde are becoming stronger by the day and are killing off the Circle. Darsal is the only one who stands in the way of more destruction, but she is in prison and has been told to love her enemies. So in the end, who is right and who is wrong? Elyon, Teeleh, or Shaeda?

Though Chaos and Lunatic showed promise through original plot points and good characters, one cannot actually expect Ted Dekker to end the Lost Books series in an original way. Not even the greatest of authors usually ends a series originally. And with circumstances like this, Ted backed himself into a corner and decided to choose the easy way out. But this easy way is also forgettable.

Johnis, Silvie, and Darsal developed several good character traits in the previous two books such as imperfection and slight personalities, and since they hold these over, it keeps the book from being completely mediocre. Shaeda also remains to be a mysterious and interesting character. However, other characters like Succrow and Marak are taken out of molds created by authors long ago. Ted Dekker has never been spectacular in the character department, so that is something he needs to work on in the future.

Everything typical you can think of happens except for the outcome of Shaeda. Dekker handled the outcome of Shaeda quite well. There is no showdown or exorcism scenes. Shaeda simply leaves and is never heard from again. Also, one does not know whether she was really in the wrong or not.

All in all, Elyon was a not a bad read, just a mediocre one because I knew what was coming. The Lost Books series was probably too long as it was. The only ones that should have been written were Chaos and Lunatic.

So concludes the Lost Books series, but we can expect to see more out of the Circle in the future, unfortunately. It has become a staple of Dekker's career, so he will never be able to write another novel without at least the slightest connection to it. However, he should put the idea to rest since he has thoroughly worn it out and tied it up in knots. He should move on and try something original again instead of getting caught up in his current rock star status among Christian fiction.

But will he do this? Probably not.

2.5 stars

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