Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Broken Angel - Sigmund Brouwer

So the world has split between the religious fanatics and the non-religious science driven atheists. Separated by a large electrified wall and an even larger moral gap... there is no crossing between Appalachia and "the Outside." Those who live within the confines of the walls are told terrible tales about what goes on "Outside" and anyone who attempts to get there must pass through the land of "The Clan" a group who lives on the border and ascribes to neither side.

But within Appalachia resides Jordan and his daughter Caitlyn... originally from the "Outside" Jordan is hiding many secrets, even from his daughter whom he adores above all else. Caitlyn meanwhile suffers from a disfigurement of the body that no medicine can cure... and something about it has grabbed the attention of both the governments of the Outside and of Appalachia, and now they have sent a merciless group of bounty hunters after her. In a world where everyone is tracked, video cameras are on ever corner and even the horses are GPS monitored... where can she run, and why is it that they all seem to want her so badly?

Though "Broken Angel" takes place in a dystopian future, the focus is not really on that world so much as the relationship between Jordan and Caitlyn, and everyone else's reactions to them. I would have liked to have seen a broader picture of the world that Brouwer created, or more depth and info. Instead what we really have is an extended chase scene from beginning to end with some nice scenery and some interesting concepts that go whizzing by as we continue the chase. The themes and concepts of the book are very simple to pick out - the degeneration of the Church into a corrupt governing body, the thought that a true relationship with God requires no church, the effect of greed and power, the effect of mindless following of faith, Government fear tactics, the government limiting education to increase control... there are plenty more and they are all right out there in the open.

This book is a very simple and fast read... there are a few points of violence that may make some cringe, but as I'm a hardened horror fan they didn't faze me. I wanted to warn you of that since many are touting this as a Christian Adventure novel... which I can sort of see, but DO expect deaths, threats of torture, violence etc. I don't recall any profanity, and the concept of sex is only implied through conversations and looks. On the whole this is a fairly good book and I wouldn't mind reading more from the author.

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