Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Ted Dekker and Erin Healy's Kiss ~ Reviewed

By Ted Dekker & Erin Healy
Published by Thomas Nelson
ISBN# 978-1-59554-470-4
Pages 322

To read the first chapter click here.

Back Cover: Let me tell you all I know for sure. My name. Shauna. I woke up in a hospital bed missing six months of my memory. In the room was my loving boyfriend - how could I have forgotten him? - my uncle and my abusive stepmother. Everyone blames me for the tragic car accident that left me near death and my dear brother brain damaged. But what they say can't be true - can it?

I believe the medicine is doing strange things to my memory. I'm unsure who I can trust and who I should run from. And I'm starting to remember things I've never known. Things not about me. I think I'm going crazy.

And even worse, I think they want to kill me.

But who? And for what? Is dying for the truth really better than living with a lie?


I have to say I was intimidated by the cover of this book. I didn't want to read a blood and guts kind of story, or one so scary I wouldn't be able to sleep at night. Don't judge this book by it's cover.This is one exciting, action-filled story that doesn't dwell on the gruesome. For that I'm thankful. It made the book so much more enjoyable for me because it wasn't gorey. This novel reminds me of Ted Dekker's books in his early years. I loved them. This story is intriguing and fascinating as the plot unfolds on every page. There are some surprising turns that made this suspenseful journey all worthwhile.

I loved Shauna's discovery about the painful parts of life - the ones that most of us would like to forget. Most of the characters in this story want Shauna to stop trying to recover her memory loss. They want the six months she has lost, to stay lost, but Shauna can't live like that. She knew someone wanted to kill her, but why? What did she know? They tell her she should be thankful to be able to forget all the pain. They say,"Why remember that?". She doesn't want a clean slate - she wants to remember who she is! She wants to know what happened that lead up to the accident! One of the characters tells Shauna "Then you will have to work harder than the average person to hold on to what is true. If you forget, Shauna, your suffering will rule you instead of free you."

Deal with the past, get justice, and make the pain go away -- that's what Shauna thought would help. Isn't that what the world tells you to do? Her doctor tells her something different, "...your plan will only root you more deeply in the pain of your past, not separate you from it. Pain was not God's plan for this life. It is a reality, but it is not part of the plan." - Shauna would have to think about that one. But, the process of getting well was made more difficult because of who her father is. Landon, her father, is running for President. It's bad enough that he doesn't have time for a relationship with his family, but he has blamed her for this accident!! Her father's advisor, Trent, has filled him in on all the details while he was on the road. Landon thought, how could Shauna be so reckless so close to
the election. Doesn't she know what's at stake?

The pain of life. The wrongs done to the innocent. How do we really get "free" from that kind of pain? This book explores many aspects of this question amidst the suspense and murder plots, that's what I loved about this story. This is the main reason I started to read Ted Dekker's books in the first place. I love to read about real people struggling with different aspects of the Christian life. I felt that Dekker and Healy were able to bring scripture to life throughout this book. Ted Dekker and Erin Healy -- a winning combination and an exciting team. I look forward to reading "Burn" in 2010.

Reviewed by:
Nora St.Laurent
- Book Club Servant Leader

Bonus Review:

Kiss is an interesting blend of what-if and humanity at it's worst, at it's most resilient.

Full of paranoia, back-stabbing intrigue and political posturing, Kiss delivers a page-turning read.

More cat and mouse than outright adrenaline, Kiss, also asks some deep questions about the human condition. Healy has added softness to Dekker's usual black and white evil vs truth scenarios. But this isn't a purely girl read by any stretch. Not totally believable, like Dekker ever falls into that category, but conceivable and that's where Dekker seems to reside. Like I said, the land of what if, well done.

Reviewed by: Kelly Klepfer

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