May 20, 2009

Book Review: The Kiss by Ted Dekker and Erin Healy


Have you ever wished you could erase the past and get a clean start? You might feel that if you could erase the pain of your past, you could move on and be free. Shauna learns this isn't quite the case in a recent Ted Dekker novel entitled, entitled The Kiss.

Shauna awakes from a coma with part of her memory erased. She doesn't remember the terrible accident that left her brother brain-damaged. She doesn't remember the drug treatments she's undergone, supposedly for her own good. And she certainly doesn't remember meeting and falling in love with Wayne, her fiance.

What she does know is that everyone blames her for the accident and the brain damage to her brother. She's always been the black sheep of the family. Her father has been distant since the night Shauna's mother died during her birth. He left her to the devices of her abusive stepmother and has never been the father Shauna needs.

Shauna is convinced that she would never hurt her brother and so sets out to prove her innocence and find out what really happened that night.
Wayne seems kind enough, so Shauna asks for his help in solving the case. But it's not easy. Every time she gets a lead, a new roadblock gets in her way, which only makes Shauna more convinced that she is on the right track.

Plus, it's hard to put the pieces together when you can't remember the last six months of your life. But there is another way to find those pieces. Shauna discovers she has developed a new power: the ability to steal memories from those she touches or kisses. This strange ability is what truly made the story for me. Shauna has lost her memory and so must steal the memories of others to help her learn the truth.

As Shauna digs deeper into the case, she encounters roadblocks that convince her that she has been framed and lied to about her past. But why? Does it have to do with her father's run for the presidency? And who is the person sending her text messages? Is there anyone she can trust?

Like many of Dekker's novels, the story was suspenseful and moved at a quick pace. The story also has a deeper meaning, for those who search for it. This speaks to the issue of why there is pain in the world. If there is a God, why does he allow people to suffer through pain? Shauna is abused as a child and abandoned by her father. And yet she is blamed for this and called selfish. There are people in this world that have suffered a great deal, and this should never be glossed over. Shauna's therapist explains that God want her not to forget her pain but to remember it differently. If we erase our pain, we erase part of ourselves. The good news is, we don't have to live with the pain every day. We only have to give it to Christ, who has taken every pain upon himself.

Dekker has a way of taking these life lessons and turning them into a breathtaking story. I highly recommend the Kiss to those who enjoy suspense with some life lessons tossed in.

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