Ted Dekker, The Priest’s Graveyard, Review.

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Hi readers. I just finished reading the Priest’s Graveyard by Ted Dekker and thought I’d do a quick review for any who would like to read it. I’ll try not to reveal spoilers, and if I do I’ll warn you ๐Ÿ™‚

Okay, so what it is about? Well, if you’re confused by the title and think it’s a haunted graveyard story, you’re wrong. In fact an actual graveyard never makes a single appearance. The Priest’s Graveyard is a metaphorical title. To understand it you need to understand what the story is about.

The story is about injustice. It’s about this priest named Danny Henson who, when he was sixteen, witnessed the death and rape of his sisters and mother. Eventually he shot the soldiers who killed his family, and it was then that he took on the “calling” of killing every sicko out there. Everyone who hurts others, he inflicts those same punishments on them, and at times it gets disturbingly gory.

Meanwhile a lone girl named Renee Gilmore was fleeing in the streets from her captor, Cyrus, who had abused her. To make her life even more dreadful she also had an addiction to heroin.

Soon, a man named Lamont Myers rescues her and takes her in and takes care of her. He helps her grow stronger and escape her addiction with help from other medications and drugs. Eventually they fall in love and marry.

I won’t give away Lamont’s details because it’s a major twist in the end.

Soon Lamont is killed, and Renee makes it her objective to kill the man who killed her lover, Johnathon Bourque. Soon Danny and Renee cross paths and what happens through the remaining pages is an exciting thrill ride with many twists and turns. And yes, Danny and Renee eventually fall in love as he helps her go after Johnathon Bourque.

(Spoiler Alert)

At the end Danny and Renee realize that everyone is guilty, not only the ones who hurt others. They realize God’s grace and mercy and learn that we shouldn’t judge others. The Scripture that’s echoed throughout is, “Judge not lest thou be judged.” We shouldn’t judge others in our sight and determine who is guilty of death or not, because we all are. So in a nutshell that’s the message and story behind it.

(Spoiler end)

Be warned, this isn’t a book for younger readers. I’ll go through the content on the bottom, it may contain spoilers.

Violence: Lost of disturbing murders done in a horrific way, but it’s not constant. That being said, the times it does come are very shocking and may deter the sensitive readers. For example a man gets cut up in pieces, lots of people are shot, and a man gets his tongue cut off while in a drugged sleep. Yep, pretty disgusting, but it’s all done with very little description.

Language: Since it’s a Christian book cursing is absent. The characters do call others names like idiot, but that’s as far as it goes.

Sex: None in action, lots of past references, and a girl is threatened sexually once. A lot of references to rape and sexual abuse, but it’s only past references and nothing is seen in action. Passionate kissing in multiple scenes.

Drugs: Again, nothing taken in action, but a lot of references to Heroin since the main character was addicted by it.

Overall this obviously isn’t a kids book, so I’d recommend years fifteen and over, and only then with caution. But despite all the violence, this is an amazing book with a great message. Yes, there are evil people who deserve death, but we’re all just as guilty. We all put Jesus on that cross, that’s the worst offence anyone could commit, and yet He did it to save us anyway.

That’s grace.

3.5/5 stars.

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5 thoughts on “Ted Dekker, The Priest’s Graveyard, Review.

  1. MA 15+ ?… not sure I am ready for that yet. : ) True justice will be served in the end of time by the Creator. Isn’t that scary? But God is good, and his mercy endureth forever… – that is wonderful news! I rejoice, that God sent his son Jesus for us, so that all that take up the cross and follow Him would be cleansed of sin. Amen!
    God bless,
    CJR Odyssey

    1. Thanks for the comment CJR Odyssey. Yes, the book is very violent at times, and I was asking if it was necessary. My opinion, no, not really. It could have been toned down a bit, but anyway, the story was great!
      I’ll be posting some book recommendations if you’re interested, ones that aren’t so violent ๐Ÿ™‚
      And yes, being judged by the creator is a scary thing, for non-believers. As Christian’s we will be judged by Jesus on judgment day, but it is still scary.
      If you’re ever interested in reading this book, there are better out there. There were times I skipped through pages and just quickly read the violent scenes. I’m more into the supernatural thrillers, while this was more of a crime novel than a supernatural or horror.
      Thanks again for the comment and God Bless!

  2. I don’t mind horror but I do like mystery and action a lot better. But thanks for the review, maybe in a few years I have another look. I think I will be ready for it then.
    But great review and keep those book reviews coming,
    Farewell and God bless.

    1. Thanks for the commit godchangeslifes146! I love mystery and action, and a little romance doesn’t go astray as well ๐Ÿ™‚ All in the Christian world of course.
      It’s interesting to note that Christian publishers don’t care how violent a story is, as long as it tells a Christian story. But if we have other things, like language or sex, the publishers say “No way!” Trust me, the Priest’s Graveyard is soft compared to some others. It’s the crime novels that are the worst with the violence. I haven’t read anything else with harder content, and I don’t think I want to. Even this book went a bit too far in places.
      I like the scary stuff that isn’t gory or violent. I hate slashers and I think they’re completely gross, but take a good’ol good vs.evil story, that isn’t gory, and I’m a happy reader! In horror, the good (God), is clear, and the bad (the devil) is also clear. There are no thinly drawn lines between the two. A lot of books and movies oftentimes make the good guys just as bad as the ones who are meant to be bad, so it can get very confusing. We used to have the old good vs. evil films like the Exorcist where God and the devil are clearly shown. But now we have movies and books where God isn’t shown and the devil is taken in the front seat. Instead of warning us against the devil like a good Hell fire and brimstone preacher would, they now say that the devil is what’s “cool” in fiction, and the Hell fire warning is snuffed out.
      That’s what I want to get back in my writing. The clear line between good and evil, where the good (God) wins in the end.
      Sorry for the long comment, God Bless!

  3. I like to hear that stuff too. you should go and bring God back into the good bad novels, and I’m sure you will do well.
    God bless, sorry for the short comment. haha

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