Athol Dickson’s name has long been associated with high praise in the literary world so it was with significant expectation that I picked up his latest novel, Lost Mission, to see where the journey would lead.
The tale commences in 18th century Italy with a Spanish monk, Fray Alejandro, sent a message by God to reach the heathens of the New World. His obedience to his Father’s call would impact the life of a young Mexican woman as she followed in his footsteps more than two hundred years later.
Devout and passionate about saving the lost, Lupe de la Garza, risks her life and liberty to minister to the lost souls of America. Emboldened by Lupe’s passion for the lost, a young American pastor makes a choice to flout the law to protect the desperate men and women hoping for a better life in his country. Shattered by his wife’s betrayal and his daughter’s choice of a husband, a wealthy Christian embarks on a grand scheme to protect fellow believers from the evil influences in the world unable to comprehend the havoc that will flow from his idealistic dreams.
Spanning centuries, multiple stories unfold of greed and betrayal, compassion and sacrifice, prejudice and fear and the plight of those lost in either the physical, emotional or spiritual wilderness.
Athol Dickson has written an evocative and turbulent story that is confronting, engaging and heart wrenching. By the time I closed this book, my expectations were well satisfied and my mind continued to ponder the revelations exposed by Athol’s deft hand. I will admit the initial stages of the book provided some frustration as the individual stories seemed slow to unfold. Concentration and focus is certainly required as Athol alternates centuries with a turn of phrase and no warning, yet it is a testament to his skill as a writer that I soon enjoyed the brief segues and anticipated the next change of realities. Athol excels in his various portrayals of the human condition and how circumstance, prejudice, faith and tragedy impacts the choices we make and our ability to perceive where those choices might lead. Lost Mission raises important questions to consider, provides an mystery that intrigues and is a redemptive tale of the healing power of God that is well worth the journey.
As seen at TitleTrakk.com and with thanks to Litfuse Publicity for my review copy