Dorene Meyer is a recognized author with several awards for her books. Here, Steph Nickel reviews one of her books entitled “Keegan,” which is the seventh book in a series chronicling the healing journeys of young people in the fictional community of Rabbit Lake.
Contact us or comment below with your own review of “Keegan” or any other book by Dorothy Meyer.
Meeting Dorene Meyer
Several years ago I met author Dorene Meyer at the Write Canada conference. (I have met so many fellow Christian authors there over the years. I really wish I had more time to read.)
Dorene was brought up among the First Nations people and now lives, works, and teaches in Norway House, Manitoba. Her heart is not only to tell their stories but also to assist First Nations people to tell their own stories, something many of them would struggle to do without her help and expertise.
This author writes believable and insightful novels, many of which are set in the fictitious community of Rabbit Lake. Although her stories are not graphic and overly disturbing, Dorene doesn’t shy away from the difficult topics of addiction, abuse, and violence—something I’ve admired since I first read her work.
This summer, while on vacation, I finished Keegan: The Group—Week Seven. I was tempted to go back and read the first six books in the series to refresh my memory about the characters and their situations, something I may still do. However, Dorene included enough information to remind me of the most important details from previous volumes.
Things to Like
As I think about the details of this story, I realize how many things I really enjoyed about the Keegan. Well … enjoyed may not be the right word exactly. Let’s say many of the characters and many of the scenes evoke a strong emotional response as I think about them.
As I’ve often said, if I feel strongly about at least one character—whether positively or negatively—I am compelled to keep reading.
For a brief novel, less than 140 pages, there are a lot of characters. That can pose a problem if the reader is trying to keep everyone straight—and they haven’t read the other books in the series for several years.
Still, as I think about the characters and their situations, I am reminded how difficult life is for some people—and how desperately we need the Lord.
Of course, becoming a Christian doesn’t make our problems disappear, but it does give us Someone who will always be there for us, Someone who will never leave or forsake us, Someone who is well able to handle anything that comes our way.
And, as the author illustrates, God is big enough to transform the most hateful and hurtful of people. He is also able to give us the power to forgive what would otherwise be unforgiveable. He is willing to enable us to make the most difficult of decisions.
As I think about what things to share with you today, I realize this story made a bigger impact on me than I’d first thought.
Is love enough to heal a child carrying the weight of an abusive past and the fear of being rejected and abandoned?
Is it ever right to put your family in danger in order to help someone the community—and your family—would be better off without? Does God ever call us to put our family ahead of public service? The author asks—and answers—these and several other questions.
The characters are three-dimensional, each with their own personality. I very much want to get to know them better—and once again visit them in Rabbit Lake.
Earlier novels set in the same fictitious community were longer. I hope to get around to reading them in the not-too-distant future.
I would love it if the books in The Group series were lengthier. In that way, the author could delve more fully into the lives of the characters. In this way, I would be drawn in even further and would feel even more like I was visiting with old friends.
Read Books By Dorene Meyer
If you haven’t read Dorene Meyer’s books and don’t shy away from stories that address the pain and heartache people face every day …
If you like realistic stories that weave in the Christian faith virtually seamlessly …
I highly recommend Dorene’s books.
I also encourage you to support the First Nations writers who are published by Goldrock Press, the publishing house run by the author of Keegan.
I’d like to leave you with a brief excerpt from the book:
“He was in heaven.
Eric was free from all suffering. He could no longer feel the pain from the bullet that had torn through his chest and stopped his heart.
Eric had left all his troubles behind, but their full weight fell now on Keegan’s shoulders. It was he who was left to deal with the fact that he had allowed one man’s death and been the direct cause of another’s.
They’d suspected that the psychopathic killer, Denny Morton, was on his way to Rabbit lake; and they had thought they had organized enough police protection for Eric.
It had all happened so fast.”
Stephanie is a freelance writer and a contributor to our Christian internet radio station, HopeStreamRadio. Read and hear more from Steph Nickel on the contributor’s page or at Steph Nickel’s Eclectic Interests.
Book Reviews and More
Images courtesy of:
Lake – 12019
Keegan – StrongNations
Man – Fotorech
Rabbit – 12019