burn book coverReviewed by Krista Castner

Burn, by Ted Dekker and Erin Healy, is fast paced and action packed with a touch of the supernatural thrown in to heighten the suspense. Although the book is classified as Christian Suspense, I was surprised to find that the Christian precept didn’t appear until about halfway through the book.

Jeneal Mikkado, is a 17 year-old member of a gypsy ‘kumpania’ (community). She is thrust in the middle of a struggle between her father, the leader of the camp, and a drug kingpin, Salazar Sanso. A fire breaks out at the camp when Sanso confronts her father about his double dealing with the DEA. Jeneal is forced to make a wrenching decision in the midst of scenes of a violent massacre. Everyone is led to believe that there are no survivors of the night’s violence.

Fast forward fifteen years. Jeneal built a new life for herself under an assumed name using money she wrested from Sanso the night of the inferno. But she hasn’t found peace in the ensuing years. She is thrown back into chaos when Robert, the boyfriend she thought had perished in the fire, captures Sanso during a DEA bust. Without giving away all the plot twists, from here on out it is a fast and bumpy ride for everyone involved.

Evil, in the form of Sanso, is drawn with a heavy hand. He’s a character with no redeeming qualities. Jeneal struggles with her ongoing attraction to him when they meet again after his arrest. Ultimately, she’s given a chance to make a different decision than the one she made on the night of the massacre. Will she choose the dark or the light this time?

The storyline in Burn was engaging and kept my interest throughout. However, I wish the story wasn’t drawn so starkly in black and white, or evil versus good. I believe that for most people the choice would be easy if the only options presented were good or evil. It’s those gray areas in between that are harder to sort out.

Krista lives just outside the urban sprawl of Portland, Oregon. Lamentably, her work as a technical writer and business analyst often interferes with her reading which is a true passion.

This book was provided free of any obligation by Phenix & Phenix Literary Publicists. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.