What I’m Reading: Green

Green by Ted Dekker

I finally finished plowing through Green by Ted Dekker, “Book Zero” of the Circle Series, which is billed as a prequel and final sequel. I’d argue it works solely as a finale and only makes sense if you read all of his other related books such as The Lost Books YA fiction series and Showdown, Saint, and Sinner. I’ve only read Showdown and Saint, so I get the feeling I missed quite a bit.

Lots of people absolutely love the Circle Series, and I’d like to be one of them. But I’m just not anymore. I read Black, Red, and White a long time ago, and I don’t remember being riveted the way some people have described. However, Green is a different animal from the rest of the series, and I have specific reasons for disliking it.

First, I’m not a fan of blood. I faint when I get blood drawn (or just normal vaccinations), bloody fight scenes in movies make me queasy, and I hate the whole idea of vampires. There’s blood all over the place in Green. Seriously, if he can throw blood on it, Dekker completely splatters it in crimson.

Second, Dekker definitely has a taste for, nay, a fascination, with the macabre. If you have read Showdown, Adam, Boneman’s Daughters, or Skin, you probably know what I mean. One of the most vivid images I retain from reading Dekker’s novels is a cruel villain yanking out a person’s eyeballs. Green is full of such images.

Third, the story was poorly executed. The allegory fell apart after a few chapters, the characters were not relatable, and the plot was forced. Sorry if that sounds harsh, but Dekker is capable of far better.

Last, the ending made me mad. I finished the book and threw it across the room (into the couch. Didn’t want to hurt a borrowed book). If I tried to explain why it made me mad, I’d probably ruin it.

I don’t usually write a negative review, but I did not like Green. Sorry, Ted.


3 thoughts on “What I’m Reading: Green

Add yours

  1. I also realize that I have recommended World War Z, a rather gory book about zombies. I’m sure that doesn’t make a lot of sense with my condemnation of all the icky stuff in Green. I should explain that…

    World War Z has some gore, but it is not the focus of the book (believe it or not). The point of Brooks novel is the political and social implications of a zombie plague, not how to kill a zombie with an axe. Brooks actually leaves a lot to the imagination, and I chose not to imagine some things.

    However, Dekker spends a lot of ink describing characters bleeding, drinking blood, splattering blood, cutting open veins, vampire bats, etc. And since Dekker is a very descriptive writer, he lingers over these images, forcing them to burrow into you mind like a parasite. Blood is the focus of the novel, whether or not he intended it to be, and it was pretty much the only thing I remembered when I closed the book.

  2. Skipping Green now, based on your review. I liked the other three — and own them, but I, too, can’t handle blood well at all anymore. Thanks for the review and the heads up. It continues the pattern of Dekker’s stuff being too far out there. I loved his early stuff and thought he was going to be a “new” Peretti. Ha.

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