Series: A.D. Series #1
Published by Center Street on October 28, 2014
Genres: Fiction, Christian, Historical, Suspense
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AD 30 | Ted Dekker
It is very difficult to get a publisher to let you write outside of your genre, your brand. Readers like to know what they’re getting and publishers like to know what they’re going to sell. It’s easy. Mystery writers write mystery. Thriller writers write thrillers. Fantasy writers write fantasy.
Dekker’s bucked that tradition ever since his early years, standing with one foot in the fantasy market (The Circle Series, The Books of Mortals) and one foot in the mainstream suspense/thriller market (The Priest’s Graveyard, Thr3e, etc.). But this is something totally different. And confusing. And amazing. It’s a deeply Christian book published with a secular publisher that manages to be revolutionary and radical without being heretical. Quite the enigma, really.
The story centers on Maviah, daughter of a Bedouin sheik, sent to Israel to craft an alliance between her people and King Herod. Maviah is utterly broken—everything that she loves has been taken from her—and then she runs into the one who binds up the brokenhearted, Yeshua.
Step back into A.D. 30 and catch this wild chariot ride through the streets of Jerusalem that masterfully contrasts the violence and religion of the age with the enigmatic presence of Yeshua. It’s an intensely personal journey, one that you tell comes from Dekker’s own heart. Do you dare to have your safe theology shook? Do you dare to have comfortable Christianity crushed? Will you dare to envision a Yeshua much wilder—and much tamer—than the one we often think of? Will you listen to the Forgotten Way of Jesus?
Dekker has never shied away from inserting deep, resonant themes into his novels. Some of these are distinctly Christian, especially in his early novels (a la The Martyr’s Song); most hold to Christian themes without being overtly Christian. But here, as it must, the Christian story comes to the forefront. It could easily have been hackishly written and overly preachy, but it isn’t. The message is louder this time around, more in the forefront, but it fits the tone and scope and purpose of the novel. This is Ted revealing his heart and it’s just absolutely incredible.
A.D. 30 is Dekker in top form, writing a story that he is heels-over-head in love with and passionate about. It’s the story of Jesus told in a powerful and relevant way that manages to remain true to its first century context. Maviah’s story will become yours as you step into her sandals and experience the revolutionary teachings of Jesus like you’ve never seen before.
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