Submitted by Lisa Moisan
The creativity and imagination that pours from Ted Dekker’s brain is rooted in his childhood. His parents, missionaries to headhunters in Indonesia, were often away from their children for long stretches of time. According to Mr. Dekker, his childhood was both fascinating and lonely. He created worlds with his imagination that helped him cope with the strange culture and the frequent absence of his parents.
Dekker grew up, went to college in the U.S. He studied philosophy and religion, graduated with a Bachelor Degree, and climbed up the corporate ladder. He decided that lifestyle wasn’t for him. He pursued other avenues of marketing, healthcare services, and buying and selling businesses. In the early 1990s, while visiting a friend, who had just written a book, he was inspired to write. Over the following few years he wrote and rewrote two complete novels.
His books can be classified as fantasy, mystery, horror, supernatural and psychological thrillers. His stories deal with themes of Good versus Evil, Sacrifice and Redemption, Forgiveness and Love.
I have not read all of Dekker’s books. I haven’t liked all of his books. But the ones I have read and liked outnumber the ones I have read and not liked.
The very first book I read of his was recommended to me by a friend. It was House, which was co written with Frank Peretti. This story is not for the faint of heart. It is a horror story of good versus evil. It is about two couples who are on the run from a maniac. They seek refuge in an old house owned by three strange people. The seven people must survive the night evading Mr. White, who makes them play a game with three rules; “1. god came to my house and I killed him. 2. I will kill anyone who comes to my house as I killed god. 3. Give me one dead body and I might let rule two slide.”
The house itself is an ominous character in the book, a maze of tension and suspense. It almost seems as if the house is working with Mr. White to keep them inside. My friend who recommended this book did not read it without having a chair propped up against the door. And she didn’t read it at night.
I was very excited when Immanuel’s Vein was released. So excited that I convinced my book club that it should be read for that month’s selection. It is about the dark seduction and attraction of evil. How it can take a handsome form and, if you let it get a foothold in your life, make you question everything you believe. If you do sucumb to its lies, only the sacrifice of love can save you. It is a vampire-love story.
This is not Twilight or some other story that portrays vampires as misunderstood heroes. Vampires are evil in this book. They want to suck the essence of life out of you and then toss you away for someone else. In Immanuel’s Vein, the main character falls in love with a beautiful girl. He must save her from the evil clutches of a vampire coven, led by a charismatic and handsome monster. The premise sounded good. I just didn’t like the book. In reading different reviews, it seems to be an either you-love-it or you-hate-it kind of book.
A serial killer is the subject of Boneman’s Daughters. The Boneman believes he is the perfect father. He takes whom he believes will be the perfect daughter. When they disappoint him, he breaks their bones without breaking their skin and leaves them to die. An Intelligent Officer who is hunting him, is not the perfect father.
In fact, his wife and daughter have left him because he has repeatedly neglected them for the sake of his job and pride. But when his daughter is taken and he is being framed as the Boneman, he has to find the killer before it is too late. Fatherly love and family devotion are the themes. This was an intense read. I only reluctantly put the book down for things such as sleep, food and work.
“No one wanted to look at the common evils of society. Very few were willing to put aside their own pursuit of happiness long enough to consider the effects of greed and jealousy around them. From what she’d seen, humans were essentially troubled. For every one behind bars, another ten deserved to be behind bars, but that would put one in ten Americans behind bars.”
― Ted Dekker, BoneMan’s Daughters
Dekker never abandons his Christian foundation. He incorporates what he knows and believes into his stories. Evil is in the world and wants to destroy it slowly and painfully. God’s love saved the world. We are, in our flawed and broken humanity, to show the world that it can be free from evil through the Father’s love. Only when Dekker’s heroes realize they can not escape the evil without relying on God, do they succeed in defeating it.
Dekker has written more than 30 books which have been released world wide. Several of his books have been made into movies, including House. If you would like more information about him and his books, you can visit his site; http://teddekker.com/
I am looking forward to November when Ted Dekker comes to St. Luke!