The Intrigue Builds and No One is Safe - The Calling by Rachelle Dekker [Review & Blog Tour]

(c.) 2016 by Tyndale House Publishers
The Calling is Rachelle Dekker's follow-up to her romantic and suspenseful dystopian debut, The Choosing.  Dekker delves into exploring the concepts of fear, control, and hope while keeping you turning the pages with intrigue and suspense!

Title: The Calling [The Seer Trilogy #2]
Author: Rachelle Dekker
Published: 2016 by Tyndale House Publishers

About the Book:
Remko Brant had never been so sure of anything as escaping the Authority City with Carrington Hale. But bravado comes easy when you have nothing to lose. Now a husband, father, and the tactical leader of the Seers, Remko has never had so much at risk.

As he and his team execute increasingly dangerous rescue missions inside the city, they face growing peril from a new enemy. Recently appointed Authority President Damien Gold claims to be guiding a city shaken by rebellion into a peaceful, harmonious future. But appearances can be deceiving. In order to achieve his dangerous ambitions, Gold knows he must do more than catch the rebels—he must destroy the hope their message represents . . . from the inside out.

With dissension in his own camp—and the CityWatch soldiers closing in—Remko feels control slipping through his fingers. To protect those he loves, he must conquer his fears and defeat Gold . . . before one of them becomes his undoing.
The Artist Librarian Review:
In The Choosing, one of the characters I wanted to learn more about was Remko Brandt, so when I found out he was the main protagonist of The Calling, I was thrilled.  In The Calling, he's much more fleshed out as a character, moving beyond simply being Carrington Hale's love interest (and now husband).  It's a roller-coaster of emotions following Remko's and the rest of the Seers' (followers of Aaron and his Father) journey throughout the novel.  Dekker isn't afraid to ... remove characters from the story, so that feeling of, "no one is safe," kept me on the edge of my seat. 

New characters were also introduced in The Calling.  My favorites were Wire (the teenage tech expert) and Jesse (a young lone archer with a mysterious past).  While The Choosing honed in on the search for a serial killer, the suspense in this novel stems from much more intrigue.  My emotions are shot after reading this --as I got to know the rebel Seers, I didn't want to think of any of them betraying the group.  With hidden agendas, betrayals, and subterfuge, the stage is being set for an intense finale.

The only things I found incredulous were decisions made by a certain character near the climax.  Though it was believable that it could possibly happen if someone gave up hope, I couldn't wrap my head around it.  I basically wanted to give that person a slap on the head, but I digress ...

While The Choosing focused more on identity, The Calling mainly deals with fear.  This is one place where Dekker's writing really shines.  While the spiritual and conceptual elements of the novel are very strong, in context they are believable and it didn't feel too preachy.  I think it could easily cross over into the general market if the spirituality (with echoes of Christian themes) are seen as part of the worldbuilding.  While especially applicable to YA or teens because of the concepts of identity and fear, I feel that adult audiences would enjoy the novel as well.  It feels a bit more deeper than your ordinary YA dystopian. 

I appreciate that both of the novels in Dekker's Seer Trilogy thus far have had satisfying closures. While of course there were unfinished threads, they weren't major cliffhangers.  I didn't feel betrayed or played with, like a gimmicky "I can't believe the author ended the book like this!"  That being said, you will want to know what happens next --thank goodness book 3 comes out later this fall!

[Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher for review purposes.]

As a part of The Calling blog tour, read on for an interview with Rachelle!

This book is written from Remko’s perspective. Did you face any challenges writing from a male point-of-view? 
There was definitely a looming pressure as I started to write the book. As a woman writer, I wanted to make sure Remko felt masculine and authentic, so I was constantly aware of how he sounded, and how he reacted. Once I got into a flow with his character though, it started to feel more familiar I didn’t have to think about it as much.

In the book you talk a lot about surrendering to fear. What does this look like and how does this help us to not be afraid? 
I think sometimes the natural reaction to fear is to hide from it, or try and push it away. It’s the idea that if we can’t see it then it must not be there, but we all know that unless dealt with the unseen things often come back to bite us. The only way to face fear is to walk through it; surrendering to Father God and letting Him reminder us of our true identity. Only then do we really see that the light within us is always greater than the fear we face.

The theme of identity from The Choosing continues in The Calling. Carrington reminds herself, “When you know who you truly are, you realize there is no war left to fight at all.” How does this statement apply to our Christian faith?
For me this is simply a reminder that God is still God. Regardless of my circumstance or how I view the world, the Father is constant and hasn’t changed. He has already won the fight, already conquered death, already set me free. It’s only when I forget who He calls me and who He is that I feel the need to fight against life instead of surrendering to Him and letting Him be God. 

Do you relate to any of the characters in The Calling in terms of how you’ve faced and handled fear in your life? How so? 
Of course, every character I write ends up having some reflections of things I’ve faced personally. You can only write what you know, as they say. I, very much like Remko, have the tendency to be in “my head” too much when faced with fear, and I struggle to let go of the need for control and simply surrender. That’s one of the main reasons I decided to write this story. 

What do you hope readers will take away from the story? 
I hope they take a moment to see themselves as children of the Father. I hope they see that true freedom and fearlessness rest in surrendering, and that when they stand with the Father than nothing can stand against them. There is incredible peace in that truth, and I hope, like I am beginning the experience, that readers feel that same peace. 

What can readers expect in the final book of the series?
Characters they know and some new ones I hope they’ll love! More questions of identity, and fear, but the characters will also be looking at forgiveness and letting go. I’m really happy with the way the final book played out, and I’m hoping readers will be as well.

Thank you, Rachelle!  With the ending of The Calling, I'm so glad that the last book is being released this fall!

About the Author: 
The oldest daughter of New York Times bestselling author Ted Dekker, Rachelle Dekker was inspired early on to discover truth through storytelling. The Choosing was her critically acclaimed debut novel. Rachelle graduated with a degree in communications and spent several years in marketing and corporate recruiting before making the transition to write full time. She lives in Nashville with her husband, Daniel, and their diva cat Blair. Visit her online at www.rachelledekker.com.

What was the last book you anticipated or couldn't wait to be released?  Did it live up to your expectations?
The Intrigue Builds and No One is Safe - The Calling by Rachelle Dekker [Review & Blog Tour] The Intrigue Builds and No One is Safe - The Calling by Rachelle Dekker [Review & Blog Tour] Reviewed by The Artist Librarian on 3/16/2016 11:30:00 PM Rating: 5

2 comments:

  1. I loved the interview with Rachelle! I am so excited for the release of THE CALLING!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you enjoyed it Caryl! Hope you are able to get to The Calling soon --I really like Rachelle's writing thus far. Thanks for stopping by!

      Delete

Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts! Comments are always welcomed and appreciated. In respect for others, please keep your comments PG/"family friendly" =)

Popular Posts

Unless otherwise noted, all material and images © The Artist Librarian, 2014 - 2015. Powered by Blogger.