The Promise – Ted Dekker

The Promise Ted Dekker
The Promise by Ted Dekker
Also by this author: The Drummer Boy, Sinner, Green, The Dream Traveler's Quest, Into the Book of Light, The Curse of Shadownman, The Garden and the Serpent, The Final Judgment, Millie Maven and the Bronze Medallion, Millie Maven and the Golden Vial
Series: Dekker Christmas Tales #1
Published by Thomas Nelson on September 2005
Genres: Children's, Christmas
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We know and love the Christmas story-light comes to dispel dark, purity comes to stomp corruption. It's beautiful. It's perfect proof of an eternal truth and light. . . . This is not the usual story. This is the tale of a mute boy who is born and abandoned in the shadows of life. He carries with him two things-his dead mother's shawl and her promise that someday he will find a king who will give him a voice. Like Reuben in The Promise, may you sing of Light, even when no one else can hear.

I really want to know whose idea it was for Christian suspense/thriller novelist Ted Dekker to write a couple of illustrated children’s/giftbook Christmas stories. I mean, around Christmas you see these kinds of books get published with the hope of capitalizing on the holiday theme. Max Lucado has several. Francine Rivers has one. A lot of authors will pen a Christmas-themed short story or novella and offer it up as something special to readers. Dekker’s previous work doesn’t exactly fit the genre. And yet, in the wake of the success of the Circle Trilogy and a recent pivot toward non-fiction with The Slumber of Christianity, it was probably seen as a way to further enhance what was quickly becoming Thomas Nelson’s top author.

In The Promise Ted Dekker follows the story of Reuben, a mute orphan with a dying adoptive mother. Her last words: God has spoken to me. Find the King. Give him my shawl. He will give you a voice. In the days that followed her death, Reuben offers the shawl to several people he thinks might be the king, but they all just look on him in scorn or pity.  Their derision only multiplies when they learn he is seeking to give it to a king. But Reuben does find the King, in the unlikeliest of places. And he finally gets his voice to sing.

Like many of Dekker’s early novels, The Promise is a parable that swirls around a biblical theme. It’s evocatively written as Dekker takes a fairly simple storyline and draws readers into the story.

Lifelike painted illustrations were done by Dan Thornberg of Koechel Peterson & Associates. Dan had been a longtime illustrator with Bethany House, responsible for a good many of their book covers before moving to KPA as an independent designer. His immersive paintings are a bit squandered on the book’s physical smallness, but the attention to detail is truly what makes the story immersive.

The Promise makes an excellent stocking stuffer for the Dekkie on your Christmas list. It’s out of print now and hard to find, making a Dekker collectible you won’t want to miss.


About Ted Dekker

Ted Dekker is a New York Times best-selling author of more than forty novels. He is best known for stories which could be broadly described as suspense thrillers with major twists and unforgettable characters, though he has also made a name for himself among fantasy fans. Dekker’s novels have sold over 5 million copies worldwide. Two of his novels, Thr3e and House, have been made into movies with more in production. Dekker resides in Austin, Texas with his wife Lee Ann and two of their daughters.

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