The Returning is author Rachelle Dekker’s third installment in her Seer Novels. I read the second book and not the first book. This book takes place 20 years after the second book. It took a while to connect with the characters, as many of them were children in the first book, if introduced at all. There was a bit of connection to the second book–which I had gotten into without knowledge of the first book.
Set in the future where the government controls everything–even the obedience and will of the people. A few have managed to escape and have found freedom–spiritually as much as politically. The time has come to rescue a member who was kidnapped as an infant 20 years ago. But her rescue will also trigger the awakening of the city where she has been kept.
The Returning deals with themes of faith, identity, and the choices we make. Throughout the book characters examine the reasons they make in choosing good and evil. Suspense and intrigue are strong in the story. Even without reading the first two books, the story is an enjoyable read.
Q&A from Rachelle Dekker:
Set the scene for The Returning. What has happened since The Calling ended?
Well, it’s been nearly 20 years, and the world has changed. I don’t want to give too much away for those who haven’t read the first two, so I’ll just say the world is very different and much more dangerous than it once was. But something is brewing under the surface. Change is coming, and people know it.
What themes are explored in this book?
Identity is something I am always exploring, so that’s no different in The Returning. But in this novel I took a really hard look at forgiveness and how that relates to our journey of discovering who we really are.
The theme of identity is explored in all three Seer books. How does forgiveness relate to identity?
For me, forgiveness is more about the one who feels wronged than the one who committed the wrong. What if, for a moment, you believed that nothing could harm you? That you, as a believer, are seated at the Father’s table and standing with him? Can anything harm the Father? If you believe no, then can anything harm you—the true you, the true spirited self? So then, forgiveness becomes more about letting go of false belief and stepping into the true identity that the Father gave to you. I know it’s radical, but belief like that could change the world, don’t you think?