Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me. Revell provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for an honest review.
(Click the title to find the book description/blurb.)
Grace and others in her religious community stay within the boundaries of Haven Valley. They adhere to the strict rules made to keep them pure and safe from the evil that’s been unleashed in the world outside of their perimeter. But doubts about the reality of what’s out there and the course those in Haven Valley are supposed to take set Grace on a perplexing path in The Girl Behind the Red Rope by authors Ted Dekker and Rachelle Dekker.
First off—high five to a father and daughter authoring a novel together!
While it’s not my usual kind of read, I chose to try this book because of its cultish theme. Indeed, that theme set my teeth on edge, as it were, as I read: the whole issue of an isolated community with a warped sense of righteousness, where oppressive laws, leaders who rule by fear, and the magnification of sin come under the guise of “holiness.” I was 99.9% sure I’d know what the authors’ basic message would be about fear vs. love, but I wanted to see how they would get it across.
However, this suspense novel turned out not to be quite what I was expecting. That is, I expected the dark and dystopian feel, but the supernatural elements with strange creatures laced into the allegory kind of threw me. I trusted nothing and no one as I read, couldn’t really get behind the characters, and the pacing and development of the plot didn’t grip me. The story is bizarre but didn’t keep me interested enough to continue on after I got through a third of it.
I’ve enjoyed some historical/biblical fiction by Ted Dekker before and may give one of his thrillers a try sometime. I’ll probably opt for one of his older titles.