Title: A.D. 33
Author: Ted Dekker
Publisher: Center Street
My rating is 4 out of 5 stars.
This novel should be read after reading A.D. 30. Maviah’s story continues as she is now known as the Queen of the Outcasts. Her beloved Judah has been imprisoned for two years as she has been traveling around, spreading Yeshua’s message and gathering the desert people to unite them. She finally reaches Judah and they are reunited. However, soon after, disaster strikes. Maviah has lost her way and forgotten Yeshua’s teachings. Her ever loyal “tower”, Saba, is with her every step of the way. Because of her actions, she must now return to Petra and beg the queen’s help in order to save the life of one precious to Maviah. She meets Herod again, and there are appearances by many characters from the first novel.
During her many miles of travel, she once again encounters Yeshua and is renewed in spirit. She learns many spiritual truths and Saba also comes to believe in Yeshua and his teachings. Readers see the ever-optimistic and joy-filled Stephen as he begins to teach Maviah’s young, desert protector, Arim, about Yeshua. Her young adopted son, Talya, must face the challenge of his young life as he must face evil head-on without his mother’s protection.
While the author is a good storyteller, I never engaged with Maviah’s character. There was no emotional connection for me. The heavy theological content in this book might bog down some readers. I know the author was trying to speak truth, and there are some profound moments between Jesus and individuals, but some of it was difficult to understand. I really liked the author’s portrayal of Stephen; it brought him to life. The story did hold my attention as I wanted to see how the various trials were resolved. The portrayal of Yeshua was well done and I did relate to him, caring about him. I do think the novel accurately depicted the life of a female in that time and the harsh lifestyle. This was a different avenue than the usual writings for this author, and I applaud him for following where led.