Brad Hughes, a fifty-eight-year-old good Samaritan, in collaboration with government officials, endeavors to help a twelve-year-old victim of abuse recover from the trauma she experienced for years. They also collaborate to protect her from future attacks by the serial killer that held her captive before her escape. Tick happens to be well-versed in biblical scriptures, highly trained in combat, and quite intelligent for her age.
Though Brad and the other adults attempt to work together to ensure she heals and follows the path to a bright future, the road ahead holds several difficulties and unpredictable twists. Ultimately, they learn profound lessons about love, healing, and patience. Tick by Jeffrey Higgs follows the story of a brilliant, fierce, and unusual twelve-year-old girl who slowly transitions from an abusive past to learning to build new relationships and trust again.
The book’s touching, poignant themes will make even the toughest reader feel emotional. I was quite teary when I went through the trying situations Tick experienced at the hands of her captor. However, seeing Brad’s effort to help her heal was heartwarming and uplifting.
For a twelve-year-old, Tick is surprisingly intimidating and wise. Readers will find her to be a likable, admirable character. We see the consequences of her traumatic past throughout the novel, as she finds it hard to trust and welcome help from others—a believable reality for a victim of abuse.
Apart from Tick’s recovery and the danger of the serial killer striking again, several themes surface throughout the narrative, including romantic relationships, family, combat, adoption, guns, schooling, court cases, medical treatment, Christianity, and more. These themes are well-balanced, ensuring the reader is never bored or unfamiliar with one before introducing another.
The antagonist is depicted as a dangerous and ruthless killer who doesn’t hesitate to inflict pain. Thus, the book is best for a mature audience and readers who don’t mind themes of physical injuries and abuse. As both Tick and Brad occasionally exchange thoughts about the scriptures, Tick abounds in profound biblical messages that Christian readers would love and learn from.
Tick is a compelling, suspenseful, and moving read. It got me deeply connected with its fictional characters and had me extremely eager to see the antagonist apprehended. The most profound message I got from the book, among several, is to do my part in spreading more love and compassion to the world to counter the forces of evil and negative energy. As seen through the book’s amazing protagonists, the reward of such acts can be significantly regenerative, healing, and life-changing.