Thursday, January 16, 2014

Review - There Comes a Prophet by David Litwack

A thousand years ago the Darkness came--a terrible time of violence, fear, and social collapse when technology ran rampant. But the vicars of the Temple of Light brought peace, ushering in an era of blessed simplicity. For ten centuries they have kept the madness at bay with "temple magic" and by eliminating forever the rush of progress that nearly caused the destruction of everything.

A restless dreamer, Nathaniel has always lived in the tiny village of Little Pond, longing for something more but unwilling to challenge the unbending status quo. When his friend Thomas returns from the Temple after his "teaching"--the secret coming-of-age ritual that binds young men and women eternally to the Light--Nathaniel can barely recognize the broken and brooding young man the boy has become. And when the beautiful Orah is summoned as well, Nathaniel knows he must somehow save her. But in the prisons of Temple City he discovers a terrible secret that launches the three of them on a journey to find the forbidden keep, placing their lives in dire jeopardy. For a truth awaits them there that threatens the foundation of the Temple. But if they reveal that truth the words of the book of light might come to pass:

"If there comes among you a prophet saying 'Let us return to the darkness,' you shall stone him, because he has sought to thrust you away from the light."

Review by: Scott

4 stars

There Comes a Prophet by by David Litwack tells a dystopian story.  The world is controlled by the Temple of Light.  Ruling through fear and strict control of information and thought the Temple refuses to allow the people to know of the civilization that existed in the past.  When three young people from a small village shown the path to lost knowledge they jump on the chance to see if the Temple is really protecting or oppressing them.

This book is very plot and suspense driven.  The story does succeed in making you think and evaluate things in life.  There isn't a lot of action in terms of fights, it mostly takes place in the form of the chase.  Nathaniel, Orah, and Thomas must travel further than any of them have ever been all while avoiding the clerics and other agents of the Temple.  They must also manage to elude the strange Temple magic that we would just call technology.

The uses of the technology by the Temple to remain in a superior position the normal class of citizen was brilliantly done.  Almost everything they have is stuff that is pretty much taken for granted today, but in a world that resembles our society a few hundred years ago the ability to instantly communicate over long distances can be a very powerful tool.

I wasn't drawn into the book in a way that I couldn't put the book down, but at the same time I wasn't easily distracted when I was reading.  They book has a strong flow that is managed well by the chapter breaks, which is something I appreciate as I am often forced to read in short bursts.

The real shine of this book is the way that it ended.  It wasn't necessarily something that I had never seen before, but the execution of it was flawless.  The completion of the three main characters personal journeys was amazing and I was very happy with how everything was done.  Honestly it is hard to really say anything without giving away something and I prefer to be as spoiler free as possible.

If you are a person that enjoys dystopian novels this is definitely a good choice.

No comments:

Post a Comment