Jesse Barlow was simply trying to pursue a good career path contrary to that of his father’s. However, the pizzazz that draws all outsiders to Hollywood is no ordinary one. This preacher’s son left home in search of greener pastures, but was ill-prepared for the terrifying rollercoaster he’d see. Anywhere would be good so long as it takes him away from under the niminy-piminy of his father.
From The Dead, traces the journey to self-discovery, a sure case of the prodigal son classic which would scar the rest of a-driven Jesse’s life, in this fictional-but-believable debut by John Herrick.
The book echoes the plight of many obdurate young people who’d readily jump-ship as soon as they reach the 18-year mark. And why not; this rebellion is for obvious reasons, to get as far away as possible from the over-bearing parent. From the Dead brings to mind the true life story of Christian singer Joy Whitlock, who also had a rebellious past before her transformation came.
Jesse sets out for the wild, wild, west nearer Hollywood in search of that good life. Struggling to hold a steady relationship with Jada the stripper, Jesse envisaged his ambition at making it to the big screen was about to fizzle out. This preacher’s son attempted an inference: suicide! And another secret came to light in the process.
The plot of From the Dead has been generally well written, however, it was also almost predictable with each climaxing episode. Herrick cleverly interweaves his redemptive story with that of the prodigal son in scriptures.
Jesse’s predicament prompted the big decision to return back home! His homecoming initially looked like a good decision — as it meant the inevitable reconciliation with his Father — until he reconnected with his first girl-friend. Caitlin had also kept back a beautiful but risky 12-year old secret from Jesse — named Eden.
From the Dead highlights the inner troubles many children of preachers face in their quest to discover who they really are, as well as in coming to terms with their vulnerabilities away from under the scrutiny of their parents. It also helps them to come to understand and appreciate the elegance of redemption abounding around them.
I’d surely watch for good writers like John Herrick in the future.