Truth, by Molly Evangeline (copyright 2011, Living Sword Publishing) is a young adult fiction story of how Makilien, a 17-year-old girl with intense longings to know about the world around her enclosed village, discovers the reality and power of John 8:32, “And you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” As Makilien encounters opposition from fellow villagers, encounters with unknown and perhaps dangerous creatures, battles, new friends, new lifestyles, and, most importantly, significant struggles within herself regarding Truth, peace, and belief in Elohim, a powerful portrayal of learning to trust and rest in relationship with God is presented. The allegory and analogies are powerful and moving.
The author presents the search for truth in a fascinating, relatable manner that has relevance for everyone’s lives. Although her world is fictional, there is no magic, witchcraft, romance, vile descriptions of hideous creatures, or unbelievable/unrealistic scenarios. The plot includes some battles and violence, but it is within reason. The description is quite reader-friendly –details of repulsiveness or torture are kept to the barest minimum, though there are some painful scenes.
The book also deals quite well with the subject of rebellion and authority. Many books present rebelling against parents as the key step to fame, heroism, adventure, or saving the world, thus tacitly encouraging the readers to a positive view of trampling authority. Although rebellion at the beginning does start the chain of events in motion that are key to the rest of the story, the entire book portrays Makilien’s coming to grips with a proper view of authority in a very encouraging, uplifting way.
This is a straightforward narrative with very little jumping around or alternate points of view. The plot is upfront: good versus evil. Yet there are enough interesting plot twists to keep the story moving in a meaningful way. There is room for much more character development in many of the minor or supporting characters, but there are two more books in which this aspect may have been developed more fully (one cannot exhaust all possibilities in the very first book of the trilogy!). On the face of it, Meniah is my absolute favorite character. From his very first mention, it is evident that something is significantly different about Meniah – and my love of allegories feasted on it to the full. Every scene with Meniah – without exception – is perfect and moving. What is more, I can relate to all of it in my own life. The author did an excellent job of portraying Meniah, hands down. I cannot speak highly enough of her portrayal of Meniah’s wisdom, love, and most importantly, the relationship that Meniah has with Makilien from the very first meeting. Her behavior and actions towards the end of the book are inspiring and yet not “religious” or “super-spiritual,” because of the manner in which she does what she does. She’s full of life, adventure, and hope – but she spends bright morning hours talking with Elohim! What an inspiration!
This is an excellent read for young adults. It is written in an easy-to-read fashion and simple enough to get through fairly quickly. Adventure abounds, and weaved in in all is a beautiful portrayal of truths for life. Indeed, the book is aptly named: Truth. Through reading this book, may you come to know the truth in a richer and deeper way – and may His Truth make you free indeed.