Immediately following their betrothal, Shale and Daniel find themselves in the midst of exploding bombs in Jerusalem. They rescue a young girl, orphaned by the warfare, and seek sanctuary in the most secret parts of the city. From there, they follow God's leading through the gates into the first century AD and begin to unravel the goal of their enemies and the location of Daniel's missing father.
The Prescience is the fifth book in the Seventh Dimension Series by Lorilyn Roberts. With the knowledge that this novel could be read as a standalone, I embarked on reading it without knowledge of the previous books in the series. That was not the best decision on my part, partly because I now know major spoilers when I finally go back and read the rest of the series. Additionally, there was so much foreknowledge for the author to try to summarize in order to make this book a standalone that it was probably impossible for her to include everything. So while I was reading it, I was struggling to understand what was going on. The characters traveled to different times, dimensions, and spiritual locations. It was fascinating, but I did not fully understand how all of the different places correlated or the characters' backgrounds in each of the places.
Despite my confusion, I found myself extremely interested in reading the rest of the series. I loved the characters and want to read more of them. I loved the Biblical symbolism and allegory that was present everywhere in the novel. The characters were tested through all of the spiritual warfare and experiences, and they grew.
My biggest critique of this novel is the plot. As much as I enjoyed the characters, setting, and spiritual aspect, I found the plot lacking. It seemed more like an episode than a rounded novel. The characters sought to follow God, find Daniel's father, and fight against their enemies. They did so, but it did not seem like a concentrated effort. It seemed more like they were wandering from one place to another, facing weird situations, and fighting the enemies they happen to come across. The novel did not seem very focused on completing a major goal, and the end was subsequently left hanging in the attempt to complete a minor goal. It was kind of frustrating. I believe that I would appreciate the story more if I had read the previous novels first, enjoying it for the pleasure of seeing the characters continue on their journey. But as a standalone, it was not developed enough to equal a well-rounded book.
Still, I enjoyed this novel very much. I recommend it as a YA Christian fiction, although I would suggest starting with the first book, The Door.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author. All opinions are my own.
In response to her review,
I posted these comments on Amazon:
Thanks, Emily, for your feedback and hosting me on your blog. It's very hard as an author to know what to include and what not to include for someone who hasn't read the previous books, and I appreciate your comments. It's also made me rethink my marketing strategy and the need to encourage people to read the earlier books instead of trying to pick up the series in the middle. That said, people will anyway, even if you tell them not to, so I tried to accommodate that possibility. And thanks for pointing out that there are spoilers, but rest assured, there is still much left to unravel in book six, and "The Prescience" sets up the final book; hence, the name.
As far as the plot, the reader will already be cued in on that by book 5 and so my focus wasn't on that, but to show how the unpredictability of life throws us curveballs and surprises and difficulties we don't expect. As the reader reads, he will see that through the eyes of the protagonists. We all have goals we want to accomplish and dreams God gives us, but the ultimate purpose of God is to transform us into His image for the world to come.
In doing that, we struggle, we find ourselves in places we could never have imagined, we make mistakes, but we hopefully grow in our walk. The question we should ask is can we glorify God through all the trials He gives us if we accept them as transforming moments, knowing we won't understand how the pieces fit together until we get to heaven? God wastes nothing if we allow ourselves to be teachable.
So what you perceived as a lack of plot was anything but. It's a paradigm on life and working out our salvation with fear and trembling even as God promises to give us the desires of our heart. Ultimately, we won't receive everything in this life we want, but we will receive what we need to become the person God wants us to be.
My goal in the series is for readers to not only enjoy a good story but to ask deep questions and ponder the enormity of what their life could become if they allow God to have full reign. I hope you will go back and read the earlier books. Believe me, you will enjoy them, and then reread "The Prescience." "The Howling," the final book will be out, Lord willing, sometime next year. Thanks for your review as I found it immensely helpful.
I would add to my comments above, as we use the giftings God has given us, our ultimate purpose as a follower of Jesus Christ is to help others to be redeemed. I will expand on this in my next blog post.