Judge / by R. J. Larson. (Tales of the Infinite, 2)
Bethany House ISBN 9780764209727
HS Grades 8-12 Rating: 5
R. J. Larson returns with the second in her young adult fantasy series inspired by the Old Testament. Judge is the story of Kien, the former Tracelands ambassador, is now a military-judge for the Tracelands, and Ela is in the Tracelands teaching others about the Infinite.
In Judge, Kien comes home on his first military leave and receives word from the Infinite to speak a warning to the faithful in ToronSea. His experience is similar to the biblical prophet, Jonah (both do not follow the Infinite’s orders completely and must face consequences). His obedience is in conflict with his military’s orders, causing legal problems.
Meanwhile, Ela heeds a call to return to Parne where the people have turned away from the Infinite to worship the goddess Atea. Ela discovers a prophet is not welcome in her home country, and Parne has become the Sodom and Gomorrah of its time. Will they heed the message to repent or be destroyed before Ela’s eyes? Will Ela escape death when others persecute her?
Though Kien and Ela are separated, their feelings for each other grow. As servants of the Infinite, they follow him before their own desires. Now king of Siphra, Akabe follows the Infinite’s orders to destroy Parne because of its wickedness. Ela’s family and other believers flee to Siphra as refugees.
Inspired by the Old Testament, Larson creates a believable world with well-developed characters in Judge. Biblical parallels are clearly evident and bring a refreshing view to Old Testament stories. A character list, a map and discussion questions, as well as an excerpt from King, the next book, are included.
Disclaimer: Book reviews are my opinion of books I either purchased or received free of cost from the publisher in exchange for a honest review.
Carol R. Gehringer