White by Ted Dekker
WhiteNow the Circle, led by Thomas of Hunter, has been growing since Justin’s return and departure. A year later, they have added about 1,000 Scabs who have turned to Elyon’s way. They are now non-violent, having given up their swords. Thomas’ wife died a year earlier, as well, but Thomas knows she is alive with Justin. The Scabs have taken over the forest and have twisted their religion to worship a form of Elyon as well. But their way doesn’t include drowning in Justin’s water, so will not lead to Elyon.
In our near present, Thomas Hunter has been killed. He was shot through the head by an assassin in France. Kara, his sister, believes she can reach him at the other Place, where the Circle is. She needs to be able to use his blood to dream and reach out to Mikhil, one of Thomas’ advisers. Perhaps, between the other Place (the Earth’s far future?) and present day they can discover a way to get an antivirus to the Raison Strain, a deadly virus that kills everyone. They need the antivirus before the incubation period has passed.
Thomas needs to sneak into the city where the Scabs rule in the forest. He hopes to find the Books of History. That is where he first learned of the Raison Strain and was able to warn the near present day leaders. Since he is dead in the present, Mikhil/Kara must be the one to carry the messages back and forth – unless the Books present a different way. In the city he meets Chelise, the ruler’s daughter and princess of the Scabs. Despite their differences, the two are attracted. But he is the sworn enemy and the one most wanted. She is the Princess and heir to the Scab Kingdom. She wants him to teach her how to read the Books.
As the virus starts showing and Thomas of Hunter’s life appears forfeit, situations in both times/places get tenser. Can Thomas find a way to save his people and Chelise and prevent millions from being killed by a bioterrorist?
First, don’t bother to read White unless you’ve read the first two books in the Circle Trilogy, Black and Red. It won’t make much sense without those stories first. But White is a wonderful conclusion to the trilogy. Up until the end I couldn’t figure out how the day would be saved even though I was sure it would be. This is that type of adventure saga that leads to a breath-holding climax. I had planned on reading this over a couple days, watching Persuasion on PBS, and doing some scrapbooking while watching the movie. Instead I stayed glued to the book and taped Persuasion to watch after I return from a trip to Arizona this weekend. White reined me in, keeping me going until I finished with a sigh of relief.
The themes are very Christian – there is no hidden allegory here. The action is constant and edge-of-the seat. I recommend Ted Dekker’s Circle Trilogy, and White pulls it together well.