The Bride Collector by Ted Dekker – Four Stars
Ted Dekker writes books that can disturb the faint at heart, and “The Bride Collector” is no exception.
Dekker takes us through the turbulent mind of a serial killer who selects only the most beautiful women he can find. His ultimate goal lies with the final bride – number seven – the most beautiful of all of them. We quickly learn who the bride collector is, and his reasons why he is killing these women – he is providing God with the most beautiful creatures to be his bride!
Enter Special Agent Brad Raines is an officer who has his own demons to deal with, a man who is detailed in everything he does. He soon detects there may be a connection he can pursue at the Center of Wellness and Intelligence, a privately run facility for highly intelligent mentally ill patients.
Raines is introduced to a “team” of patients who might be able to assist him in finding out who the bride collector is, but he is particularly drawn to one of the team members – Paradise. She has a gift for seeing things, but she also has agoraphobia and refuses to leave the Center. Raines arranges for the body of the fifth victim to be brought to the Center in order to see if Paradise can read who might have killed her.
Paradise does see something, but it frightens her to no end, and she buries it deep inside and is not able to relate what she has seen. She also, for the first time in her life, begins to trust, and maybe even fall in love with the handsome detective. Will he return the same emotion, or is he just there to use her to catch the bride collector?
I will not divulge anything more because that would spoil the read for you, but this much I will say: The Bride Collector has enough twists and turns in it to keep you reading right up to the final page. You may even come away with a deeper understanding of a world beyond ours – the world where those with a mental illness are not that much different from those of us who claim we are sane.