Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Lisa T. Bergren's The Betrayed ~ Reviewed

The Betrayed (Book 2 of The Gifted)
Lisa T. Bergren

ISBN: 0425217086
ISBN-13: 9780425217085


The first book in Lisa T. Bergren's Gifted trilogy, The Begotten, was hailed by Library Journal as "a full-bodied, absorbing tale that combines authentic historical detail with a universally appealing and gripping story that will have readers cheering." Now the breathtaking quest of the spiritually empowered Gifted ones-prophesized in a long-lost illuminated letter from the apostle Paul-continues as the healer, the priest, and the knight gather together to fight a battle in a profound new war. For the enemies of the Gifted are gathering, led by an evil lord who will do anything to destroy their unwavering faith.

My Review:

I love this series.

Intrigue, passion, hope, heart, history.

If you love great stories, tight writing and church history teamed with romance, fantasy, suspense and mystery, you've got to get this series. If you loved DaVinci Code, Rivers' The Mark of the Lion, Bright and Cavanaugh's Great Awakenings you'll find much to like in The Gifted series.

As far as flaws, they are tiny. Three very similar names of major players confused me at the beginning, but once I figured it out, it didn't hinder my enjoyment. Bergren does a small amount of telling and some passive writing, but to tighten this series up any further would have made the story almost too tense.

Those who will not read speculative Biblical fiction may not like this series. It is based on a "lost" letter. Bergren does not twist doctrine or attempt to rewrite Scripture, she just adds a story line happening centuries after the Bible, as we know it, was fully formed. What if the gifts of the Spirit landed on individuals who then were drawn together in a group and called to fulfill a path chosen by God? Good question and the amazing story playing out in just such a scenario.

The Betrayed is a powerfully written, gut-wrenching tale. As the characters agonize and struggle with the Gift that each has been given, and the responsibility that comes with it, I couldn't help but think of Job's wife's counsel. "Curse God and die."

The characters are brought to that point, the one where all they have left is the struggle between believing God is who He says He is, and finding a shortcut out of their pain. Each character is three dimensionally formed and believable as they accept, in degrees and layers, God's calling and their expected obedience.

The spiritual warfare aspect of the book is powerful as well, classic good versus evil, but with the good showing weakness and insecurity and evil showing raw magnetism.

Reviewed by Kelly Klepfer
http://www.kellyklepfer.blogspot.com/ (visit for a mini interview with Lisa)


Dawn Burns said...

Thanks for the review.
Can Book 2 be read without reading Book 1?

Kelly Klepfer said...

It can be. Book 2 got stronger and built off book 1...but I think it could work alone. You might miss a few pieces of info but not crucial. I read them really close together and didn't get annoyed by too much back story, so I think she handled it really well.

Lisa Tawn Bergren said...

Kelly, thanks for the review and comments! I can't tell you how much it encourages me as I labor to finish rewrites on Book 3, THE BLESSED. Bless you and your readers!
Lisa T. Bergren