Immanuel’s Veins

immanuels-veins

Title

  • Immanuel’s veins [sound recording] / Ted Dekker.

Authors

Publication Info

  • [United States] : Thomas Nelson Inc., 2010.

 ISBN

  • 9781400316748 : $29.99

UPC

  • 9781400316748

Length

  • 8 sound discs (409 min.) :

Formats

  • Compact disc
  • MP3
  • Hardcover
  • Paperback
  • Large print
  • eBook

Genre

  • Christian Paranormal/suspense
  • Historical
  • Romance

Reader’s Annotation

Imperial warrior Toma Nicolescu fights to save his love from an evil that is darker than he could have ever imagined.

Summary

Catherine the Great dispatches her greatest warrior, Toma Nicolescu, to protect the Cantemir family, a widow and her two beautiful daughters, in Moldavia. On the way, Toma and his companion Alek receive a warning from a strange old man who talks to a crow: God has told him to warn Toma to beware the evil that comes to contest him.

Upon arrival at the estate, Toma and Alek find a party in full swing. Almost immediately they are set against a party of strangely dressed, passionate Russians from the nearby Castle Castile. No one seems to know anything about them, but they quickly work themselves into the graces of the widow Kesia Cantemir. There is something about the Russians that rings warning bells in Toma’s head, but he can’t quite put his finger on it. Perhaps it is jealousy as he falls head over heels for Lucine Cantemir. Or perhaps it is their unconventional behavior and strange talk of blood. Can he figure out this puzzle before it is too late? Can he save his beautiful Lucine?

Evaluation

This Christian fiction novel goes right into the heart of darkness. It is a sensual telling of a tale of passion, love, seduction, and redemption. Immanuel’s Veins, set in Moldavia during the rule of Catherine the Great of Russia, is very atmospheric, with great estates, lavish parties, dark and stormy nights, brooding heroes, and vampires. It is emotion driven as a romance, but with a suspenseful plot that will keep the reader on the edge of her seat. Though categorized as Christian fiction, it is not a preachy, moralistic novel. Instead, it is a love story that becomes a parallel for the love of Christ for His Church. This does not become evident, however, until the end of the book. While passionate and seductive, sex remains innuendo or behind closed doors.

The audiobook version is narrated by Chris Andrews. The sound quality is good, but the narration is average. He uses no accents or changes of pitch or tone to separate characters. Emotional inflections are fairly subtle. One bonus of listening, however, is the pronunciation of difficult Russian, Ukrainian, or Moldovian names. The story is fairly easy to follow in audio as it is told largely from one viewpoint, that of Toma, and the number of characters is kept small. This book, however, might be more enjoyable in print.

Author

Visit the author’s website.

A video interview on Youtube

Interview with New York Times

Reviews

Goodreads

Publishers Weekly

Crosswalk.com

Appeal Factors

This book may appeal to people of the Christian faith who like edgier, darker fiction than the average Christian novel. It could also appeal to non-Christian readers of paranormal romance/historical fiction if they are open to the spiritual aspects.

Readalikes

Cain, by James Byron Huggins. This book shares with Immanuel’s Veins the genre Christian Paranormal/Suspense and characters who are soldiers.

The Robe, by Lloyd C. Douglas. This is an older book, but shares the genre historical Christian fiction and romance with a little supernatural thrown in. Both novels share the subject redemption and characters who are soldiers.

Author readalike: Frank Peretti. Peretti also writes Christian suspense with supernatural elements in the battle between good and evil. Peretti is rarely as dark as Dekker.

Awards/Lists

Library Journal Best Christian Fiction

Booktalk ideas

As this is an emotionally driven book, a booktalk should appeal to the emotions. This can be done by talking about Toma’s feelings for Lucine and how much he wants to protect her and to save her.

Discussion Questions

Why are Alek and Natasha so easily taken in by the Russians?

What did you think of Kesia Cantemir’s parenting style? What role did this play in her daughters’ susceptibility to seduction by the Russians?

Toma is a man with a great sense of duty and responsibility. Has duty ever kept you from something you really wanted? How did Toma come to choose love over duty? Was he able to fulfill both?

Discuss the blood imagery in the book and its relationship to Christianity.

Why I chose this book

I have read one other Dekker novel. This one was quite different with the vampires, and I’m not usually a vampire book fan, so I thought I would challenge myself a little.

Memory Hooks

Vampires, Russia, Catherine the Great, Moldavia

 

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