Black: The Birth of Evil (The Circle #1) by Ted Dekker (2003)
Fiction | Paranormal/Sci-Fi Thriller
“Enter an adrenaline-laced epic where dreams and reality collide.
Fleeing his assailants through deserted alleyways, Thomas Hunter narrowly escapes to the roof of a building. Then a silent bullet from the night clips his head…and his world goes black.
From the blackness comes an amazing reality of another world-a world where evil is contained. A world where Thomas Hunter is in love with a beautiful woman. Then he remembers the dream of the chase as he reaches to touch the blood on his head.
Where does the dream end and reality begin? Every time he falls asleep in one world, he awakes in the other-both facing catastrophic disaster. Thomas is being pushed beyond his limits…even beyond the limits of space and time.
Black is an incredible story of evil and rescue, betrayal and love, pursuit and death, and a terrorist’s threat unlike anything the human race has ever known.
Some say the world hangs in the balance of every choice we make. Now the fate of two worlds hangs in the balance of one man’s choice.”
pooled ink Review:
Hmmm…another DNF (Did Not Finish) book here. I’m usually the type of person who finishes a book if only to finish it. Ya feel? But sometimes my brain just refuses. Unfortunately this was a case of that. And I feel bad about it.
Why feel bad? Because I want every book to be a winner! I want every author to succeed with every reader! But I also feel bad because a friend highly recommended this series to me and my stupid brain just couldn’t get into it. UGH.
First of all it’s important for me to note that I 100% plan on trying to read this book again eventually. I just feel that when a good friend of mine really supports a book that I have to give it a solid try because I want to be just as excited about it as they are. But right now? I’m just too busy, too stressed, and my brain says “Nah, bruh.” But let’s get into the story…(or at least as much as I read then, uh, skimmed).
The opening had me totally intrigued. The evil plotting was a sure-fire way of grabbing my attention and I couldn’t wait to see what chaos would ensue! Then the first official chapter takes us to the book’s protagonist, Thomas Hunter. The book really plays with this mind-bender of a plot where Thomas is suddenly living in two different worlds. In one he is living with an older sister in Denver, Colorado being chased by the mob who’ve finally found him after he stiffed them for $100k. But when he falls asleep he “wakes up” in a different world, a supposedly future earth that is divided by a magical river that separates the earth into good and evil. Aaaaand when he falls asleep there he “wakes up” back in Denver. You see the problem, yes? Poor Thomas thought he was going crazy as did everyone else!
Now this concept was really cool to me and paired with that little opening of a wealthy evil mastermind plotting his ultimate power grab, well, I was feeling pretty hype to figure out how all this chaos would eventually be spun tighter and tighter until suddenly everything connected and my mind would light up like fireworks with a giant O.M.G. But I have a few qualms that led my brain into giving up on it (for now).
First was simply this “future” earth. It was just a wee bit too bizarre for me to buy. But that’s just my personal taste. In general, any fantasy/sci-fi fan can accept the crazy parameters of this setting. But for some reason my brain just wouldn’t sink into the story and accept it even if a part of me was genuinely intrigued to learn more. (I think another part was also the writing/dialogue during these scenes…maybe?)
Another issue I had was that I felt the book was simply taking too long to get over this “am I dreaming?? which world is real??” hump. There was too much back and forth with both worlds trying to convince Thomas that theirs was the real one and the other merely a dream. It made me lose interest. I wanted it to hurry up and get over this mental quandary and get to some action, some answers, some progressive development, excitement, and thrill! Let’s get on with this evil plan for world domination!!
And yeah those are pretty much the two little qualms I had that led my reading of this book to shudder and screech to a slow frustrated halt. I want to keep reading and I want to get sucked into the story, but I can’t. At least not now.
The concept sounds really cool, the series seems unique and exciting, and honestly everything about it is totally like something I’d love. But my brain isn’t in the mood for it right now I guess. Does anyone else get frustrated when that happens?? When you want to get into a story so bad but your brain just longs for something else or Netflix? So. Frustrating.
But please, if you’re interested in a sci-fi/fantasy story that is infused with action, philosophy, and mind-bending plot lines then definitely check this one out! You might really like it! It has great reviews so I think my brain must just be a bit off-kilter at present (which isn’t really surprising because I’ve been so busy and stressed out lately) so I’m definitely keeping it on my list to read again and hopefully I’ll be able to relax and sink into the story and then update this review. I really want to see where Thomas Hunter’s story goes but for now it’s back to the library.
Purchase Here: Black: The Birth of Evil
Meet Ted Dekker!
TED DEKKER is a New York Times bestselling thriller author. Heralded as a “master of suspense” by Library Journal, Dekker has sold millions worldwide, establishing himself as one of the most widely recognized author brands.
Dekker was born to missionaries and grew up among cannibals of Indonesia, and his peculiar upbringing gives him a unique perspective outside the cultural bubble, allowing him the freedom to share provocative insights in his fiction. He now resides in Austin, Texas with his wife and children.