Saturday, May 7, 2011

The Priest's Graveyard

The Priest's Graveyard by Ted Dekker is a very interesting novel. It is a thriller about two people: Renee Gilmore, a former drug addict with several personality disorders, and Danny Hansen, a priest who has lived through hell and survived.

Let us start with Danny. Danny Hansen grew up in Bosnia, living a happy life, but when his mother and sisters were raped and slain unmercifully during the Bosnian War in 1992, Danny (only fifteen at the time) vengefully killed those responsible. He then joined the military to put an end to enemy soldiers doing the same to others.

Danny then moved to the states, and he became a priest. He was a normal priest on the outside, but he had a double life. Without people knowing, he tracked down men, powerful men, who had been the cause of hundreds of others' deaths. He tried to show reason, and if they did not repent, he did the world a favor and ended their misery.

Renee Gilmore had been rescued off the streets by a man named Lamont Myers, after she had been shot far too high with cocaine, and was running away from her former dealer (who happened to have a lot of thugs with guns). When Renee woke up in a room that later turned out to be in Lamont's house, she soon fell in love with the man, and lost her drug addiction pretty quickly, with the help of medications.

After a year of living with the man in his glass mansion, Lamont suddenly disappears one day, and doesn't return. Renee very quickly loses her mind, as this man was the center of her entire life for the past year. She believes there is only one man who could be behind the disappearance—the same man that Danny is tracking. And, of course, before long the two are working together to find this man, and with the same idea in mind of what to do to him.

The Priest's Graveyard is one of those books that doesn't really have any protagonists. None of the characters are really "good guys", though by the end that may change. This novel is another love story—yeah there are a lot of those—but it is extremely well-written and it's definitely not only a lot story. It's certainly not a romance story. It's a dark, mystery thriller, filled with intriguing content, and it makes a really great read.

The point of view is written in the first person, from the viewpoint of Renee. This may be so that the readers can understand her personalities and disorders, but in truth it just confused me all the more (which also may have been why it was written this way).

The Priest's Graveyard is a very different book from Dekker's other works, and it debuted higher on the New York Times bestseller list than any of his books have been in the past. This is one huge leap into the world of secular fiction, one leap that may eventually land this book at the top of that bestseller list.

In the end, this sad, sad novel presents one interesting question: If you knew that somebody has killed many people in the past, and they were going to kill again, would it be alright to kill them, and only them, so that in the future less people would die? As a Christian it would seem the answer would be obvious, but once you think about it, you really start to wonder.

Anyway, look for The Priest's Graveyard in stores now! Ted Dekker is currently writing a sequel to this book, The Sanctuary, set to release in 2012.



  1. Great review! It makes me want to read TPG again :)

    - Josh Rollins

  2. Nice review Rueben...If you combined paragraph 1&8, it would probably be one of the review in the book itself!. :D

    Oh this is Mike from AfE!. :P

  3. I like this review, Reuben. You give a good description of the book without giving anything away. And, same as Josh, it makes me want to read The Priest's Graveyard again.