By R.J. Larson
Published by Bethany House
Published on April 1, 2012
Summary taken from Goodreads:
Ela Roeh of Parne doesn't understand why her beloved Creator, the Infinite, wants her to become His prophet. She's undignified and bad-tempered, and at age seventeen she's much too young. In addition, no prophet of Parne has ever been a girl. Worst of all, as Parne's elders often warn, if she agrees to become the Infinite's prophet, Ela knows she will die young.
Yet she can't imagine living without Him. Determined to hear the Infinite's voice, Ela accepts the sacred vinewood branch and is sent to bring the Infinite's word to a nation torn apart by war. There she meets a young ambassador determined to bring his own justice for his oppressed people. As they form an unlikely partnership, Ela battles how to balance the leading of her heart with the leading of the Infinite.
The Cover: I love this cover. I love the font, the way the cover is designed, and I love the model. The model looks like what I would imaging Ela to look like. She is innocent looking, dressed in robes, and carrying her "walking stick". I love they they put an effect on the stick to make it look like it was glowing. I think the cover designer did a beautiful job on this book.
The Characters: The characters are what really shine in this book. I love Ela's innocence, with an occasionally sassiness. I love that the author made Ela a real person to me- she wasn't some mindless puppet. Ela had real feelings and desires and was struggling to ascertain what was appropriate to feel and do as "the prophet". I thought Ela was brave, intelligent, and a heroine I truly cared about. Ela's love interest (who will remain nameless to avoid spoilers) was sarcastic and a little vengeful, but transformed through the course of the book into someone that both Ela and the reader fell in love with.
The Story: This was an easy story to read. I loved that the world the author created wasn't incredibly complicated. Fantasy novels have that problem usually- they spend the entire first half of the book world building. The author blends world building seamlessly into the narrative to create an enjoyable fantasy story. I am not sure why this is being recommended to people who like the Hunger Games. I get that the Hunger Games is popular right now, but I think the comparison does Prophet a great disservice. Prophet is not a dystopian- it is fantasy, and if you read the two genres they are not incredibly similar. Prophet is an excellent book and Hunger Games is an excellent book- but they are not the same. Christian and non-Christian readers will enjoy this fantasy novel. I am impressed by this author and can't wait to read more!