Saturday, August 15, 2015

Wild in the Hollow - Amber C. Haines

I didn't expect to be disappointed in this book.  But I was, and I'll explain why.

Amber starts the book off explaining her brokenness and separation from God.  She is definitely skilled at word-weaving, and poetically describes her sins and the way in which they continually tore her down, physically and spiritually.  One day, she has had enough of her lifestyle.  She is lying on the floor, drunk and wanting to die, when she describes God's Spirit giving her new life.  She doesn't really explain how this happens, and I suppose I can accept that...for she goes on to describe her new life searching the Scriptures and learning to know who God is.

I understand that the writer is human, and is openly and bravely sharing her story, but I felt that she wasn't clear enough about her sins *after* she was saved.  This is my biggest problem with the book.  She talks almost jokingly about her boyfriend/fiance and how they just couldn't make it to the altar as virgins no matter what they did.  She seems to shrug this off, as if it doesn't really matter what they did since they were obviously meant for each other.

After they are married, she talks about one day finding her husband's pornographic search history on the computer, but never discusses it again, as if it was a one-time incident that didn't so much matter.  We never find out if he found victory over this, or if was a recurring struggle in their marriage.  Then, she reveals that she had had an affair early in their marriage...and how heartbroken and distraught it made her husband. According to Jesus (Matthew 5:28), these sins are equal in His eyes.  I understand that she is writing about herself and possibly didn't find it necessary to address her husband's sins...but it seemed like a strange contradiction to me.

I feel that she did a good job in describing a "real" woman's struggle with sin, with temptation, with finding her way to God...but failed in clarifying the black and white issues that I believe do exist.  Yes, we are to love all people, but we are not to glorify sin, or downplay it in any way, and it feels that she does this about herself.

I received this book free from Revell Reads (Baker Publishing Group) in exchange for an honest review. 

Through Waters Deep - Sarah Sundin

This is an interesting, well-written book.  Mary Stirling is working as a secretary at the Boston Naval Yard, and runs into a childhood (well, high school) friend, Jim, shortly into the book.  There are a number of "odd" sabotage-like incidences that happen around the yard, as well as one of the subs that Jim gets shipped out on.  Mary keeps track of discussions and happenings with her impressively fast shorthand, and eventually ends up turning her findings into the FBI (numerous times, as they don't take her seriously until the end of the book).  She ends up spending a lot of time with Jim.

Mary has one problem though: she is crippled by fear.  At the beginning of the book, she is unable to receive attention publicly for things she has done.  Through the book, she learns to know herself better and realize that she is not simply doing things for attention, as well as gain self-confidence through her friendship with Jim.

I appreciated that this was a Christian book, and that the emphasis was much less on Mary & Jim romantically (despite the cover picture), and more on the actual story.

I received this book free from Revell Reads (Baker Publishing Group) in exchange for an honest review.