April W Gardner’s Review of “Prophet” by R.J. Larson
Posted by April W Gardner on May 9, 2012
I’ve had a run of great books lately. The pattern seems to be that I go months without finding a single book that really grasps me, consumes my mind. Then I’ll have a rash of them, and my hope in the literarily world is renewed.
Two weeks ago, Valeria’s Cross took me back to Rome, the early Christians, and the birth of the Holy Roman Empire. You can read my review HERE.
This week, it was Prophet by R.J. Larson. As I wrote the author’s name just now, I got to wondering whether or not it was male or female. A quick Google has me squealing in delight. R.J. Larson is none other than Kacy Barnett Gramckow! I couldn’t be more thrilled!!
Years ago, I fell in love with Kacy’s Genesis Trilogy. I broke my reviewers teeth on book one, The Heavens Before. When I heard she was being published again, I was ecstatic! But that was months ago, and I’d since forgotten I’d offered to review it for her.
When Bethany House sent this book to me, I had no idea why, (silly me!) but one chapter in, I was so glad they did. By the end of the first pages, I’d swallowed the hook and joyously succumbed to be reeled in, one blessed page at a time.
Engaging and unique enough for the pickiest of readers (me) yet straightforward and clean enough for the youngest (I plan to let me 10yo bookworm read it) Prophet is one of those books you’ll never forget.
About the book:
Close your eyes, Ela of Parne. Close your eyes and you will see.
Ela Roeh of Parne doesn’t understand why her beloved Creator, the Infinite, wants her to become His prophet. She’s undignified, bad tempered, and only seventeen–not to mention that no prophet of Parne has ever been a girl. Worst of all, as the elders often warn, if she agrees to become the Infinite’s prophet, Ela knows she will die young.
Istgard has turned their back on me. See the evil they do.
Yet after experiencing His presence, she can’t imagine living without Him. Determined to follow the Infinite’s voice, Ela accepts the sacred vinewood branch and is sent to bring the Infinite’s word to a nation torn apart by war. Here she meets Kien, a young Traceland ambassador determined to bring his own justice for his oppressed people. As they form an unlikely partnership, Ela must surrender to her destiny . . . and determine how to balance the leading of her heart with the leading of the Infinite.
Prophet is Old Testament prophets meets Star Wars, minus the space elements. The author weaves stories of Old Testament prophets into an imaginary land and time in a way that breathes fresh air into the old Bible stories. The book makes you wonder about the prophets… What must it have been like to hear God speak during a time when visits from the Spirit were rare and fleeting? How terrifying must it have been to face kings influenced by Evil and bent on the prophet’s destruction? The author does a beautiful job of filling in her version of the answers. She left me quite satisfied, yet longing for more!
Apart from subliminally coercing me to think deeper into the real accounts, Ela’s communion with the Infinite created a yearning in me for a deeper relationship with God. I can credit no other novel with that level of achievement.
The characters are enchantingly colorful. Especially little Tzana, Ela’s young sister who is stricken with a premature aging. I adored Tzana and Pet. “Pet” is the name of the girls’ Destroyer, which is a species of war horse. Pet has a personality all his own, and if for no other reason, the book is worth reading for him alone.
I can’t speak highly enough about this book. It’s earned its place on my Wall of Fame 2012 and rightly so!
–April W Gardner is the author of the historical romance series,
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