Series: The Outlaw Chronicles #1
Published by Worthy on January 2014
Genres: Fiction, Christian, Suspense, Young Adult
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So who are you?
In a return to the kind of storytelling that made Black, Showdown and Three unforgettable, Ted Dekker drags that question into the light with this modern day parable about how we see ourselves. Humming with intensity and blindsided twists, Eyes Wide Open is raw adrenaline from the first page to the last pure escapism packed with inescapable truth. Not all is as it seems. Or is it? Strap yourself in for the ride of your life. Literally.
Eyes Wide Open | Ted Dekker
Christy Snow has lost her identity. She has no recollection of life before age thirteen and is orphaned. She wears a locket around her neck with a stock photograph of strangers on the inside. It represents hope. It represents a hope she will find her parents and discover who she really is. Really, this locket is her identity. And she’s lost it.
Austin Hartt thinks he’s found his identity. Just like Christy, he has no recollection of life before age thirteen and is orphaned. But rather than a locket, Austin has turned to the world of academia to find identity and self-worth. Both will soon have their worlds shaken.
There’s not much to say about this novel that hasn’t already been covered in my reviews of the four serial installments: Identity, Mirrors, Unseen, and Seer, so instead I’ll focus on some aspects of the novel as a whole and the novel’s release structure.
I, for one, enjoyed the fact the novel came in a serialized form. Though Ted’s branded it as a new form of storytelling, really it is only a resurgence of the same kind of serial storytelling that was popular. Dickens’ Pickwick Papers firmly established the style as popular in the 1830s and other classic authors such as Doyle, Melville, Tolstoy, and Dostoyevsky wrote works that were published serially. This type of storytelling waned as technology grew, but with the prevalence of the Internet, individuals are once again reading in more bite-sized chunks.
Dekker isn’t the first established author to take advantage of technology to promote a serialized story. Stephen King attempted the same (perhaps prematurely) back in 2000 to mixed success. His novel, Plant, netted him almost a half million dollars, but was abandoned after six chapters and remains unfinished. In the decade since, ebook technology has made the serial story more viable than ever for established authors. It will be interesting to see the final results of Dekker’s experiment.
There has also been some confusion about the format of the books, which I can explain here: The Outlaw Chronicles will be a series of full-length novels, the first of which is Eyes Wide Open. With Eyes Wide Open, Ted Dekker initially released in four serial episodes—Identity, Mirrors, Unseen, and Seer. Further novels in the series were intended to continue the ebook episodic format, but were eventually abandoned. Worthy Publishing took a more traditional route for Water Walker and Hacker.
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