How well do you know who you are? What if something happened that made you question everything about yourself? Your family? Your history? Your name? Even what you look like?
Christy Snow is a troubled girl with a fractured past, but she's not crazy. At least, she thinks she's not. So why is she in a mental institution? Christy remembers ending up in the mental hospital while looking for her locket in the basement of an adjacent building. When the staff begin questioning her, she never imagined they'd mistake her for patient that tried to escape. Now she's locked up, and everyone says that she's actually a girl named Alice who was recently admitted to the hospital. But how could that be? She remembers who she is.
Austin Hartt is Christy's closest friend. When he goes looking for her, he stumbles upon something he wasn't meant to see. Soon, he's also admitted as a patient named Scott Connelly. But he knows he's not crazy, and neither is Christy.
Things begin happening that cause Christy and Austin to question their reality and their very identity.
EYES WIDE OPEN by Ted Dekker is the kind of story that causes you to feel what the characters feel. It's a trippy feeling, knowing that Dekker has crafted this story that begins with you knowing that these two characters aren't crazy. They've just stumbled onto something that someone has to cover up. But as the story rolls along, you, as the reader, can't help but start questioning what Christy and Austin really know about themselves.
EYES WIDE OPEN was originally released last year as an episodic eBook, and each chapter feels like an episode in a bigger story. I love television, especially shows full of mystery like LOST and Once Upon a Time, so I enjoyed the episodic feel of this book.
I think Dekker did a really good job with the characters in this story, considering what they believe about themselves and the impossible situation they're thrust into. It's a great example of what Stephen King talks about when he says to create compelling characters and throw them into a troubling situation to see how they'll react.
At the core of this story is the concept of identity. It's really a struggle that I think all people have, and Dekker explores it creatively and compellingly. Where do we find our identity, and does it matter? This story prompts the reader to get to the core of who they are. As always, this Dekker novel ultimately points to the one rescuer that is Jesus, and our identity can only truly be found in him.
As you read this novel, be prepared to question everything as you're reading. There are plenty of twists and turns, and the story is compelling all the way to the end.