I didn’t read (well, actually, listen to)this novel with the intention of reviewing it, but the Lord used this novel so powerfully for me that I really wanted to write a few words :). Content notes are below the review portion.
Wow! As I’ve mentioned before, allegory is my favorite genre. I would definitely categorize this book as an allegory, but it also doesn’t tick the traditional allegory boxes. Typically, the allegories that I read are set in another world, or a speculative version of ours (i.e., apocalyptic/distant future). Additionally, they are frequently Gospel retellings—which I love!
But I also really appreciate the different approach that Blackstock takes with this standalone. For one thing, the novel is set in the recent past, in our familiar world, and could actually be categorized as realistic fiction, for that reason. The events of the novel are also everyday occurrences.
Likewise, while the book POWERFULLY ministers the truths of the Gospel, it is not a traditional retelling (putting Jesus’ earthly ministry in a fictional form).
And yet, this book REALLY brought Scripture to life for me, particularly Jesus’ parables. For me, personally, the novel read as a fleshing-out of the story of the lost coin and of the prodigal son, with definite undertones of the parable of the treasure in the field and the parable of the talents.
And, wow, as I wrote that it occurred to me that these parables were Jesus’ ways of explaining redemption— so it is very likely that the author was just using the Gospel, and not specifically the parables, as her source material. Mind BLOWN. But, this just goes to show how the book brought Jesus’ teachings to life for me, in a brand new way!
Absolutely, utterly beautiful.
The work simply abounds with the truth of God’s unrelenting love and passion. It’s the story of His perseverance in winning our hearts. And it showcases the beautiful, best moment of reunion. I’ve mentioned before that God speaks to me through story, and this is one of those examples. I would LOVE to see people handing out books like this one when they go out to evangelize.
HIGHLY recommend. I do have some content notes, because of some sensitive material, but this does not in any way change my recommendation status.
Content Notes (with Spoilers) Below
- References to making-out (which the main character observes)
- Young teenagers face the threat of sexual assault, from slightly older teenagers and a creepy family member
- The main character gets an abortion, but the author is very clear about what abortion is