Almost nothing is known about the two men who were crucified beside Jesus. Why did one ask for forgiveness? What would cause him to do that? What if there was a history there? What if he had crossed paths with Jesus before the fateful day of both of their deaths? That's the premise behind Tale of the Penitent Thief by Don Willis, and I was intrigued. So I read it.
And I was so disappointed. I could have overlooked the multitude of misspellings, grammatical errors, and extra words that made no sense in context, if it had not been for the glaring historical mistakes. I cannot believe that a person who claims to be a Christian, writing a work of Christian historical fiction, would know so little about Jesus' story. Jesus is one of the most written about historical figures ever. From ignoring the shepherds completely, to skipping Jesus' family's flight to Egypt, this book is full of mistakes. I lost it when, in chapter 11, Joseph told the main character that God said something that Jesus wouldn't say for another 30 or so years.
The story itself was not horrible, but the writing was. And the twist at the end? I didn't see it coming--a good author would have foreshadowed enough that even if I hadn't seen it coming, I would have seen it in retrospect.
Bottom line: this book could have benefited greatly from a good proofreader, and research. Don't bother.
I receive this book for free (thank God I didn't spend money on this) from the publisher through Book Look Bloggers in exchange for my honest review.