Thursday, January 04, 2007

Redeeming Love

Book #4 of 2007 is Redeeming Love. Someone loaned me this, telling me I just had to read it because it was the best book ever. On the back of the book, a blurb promises that the book is "the most powerful work of fiction you will ever read."

I can't stand these overblown promises for a book. I mean, really, what are the odds of this being the most powerful work of fiction I will ever read?

After reading it, I went and looked at the reviews on Amazon, and the vast majority of the reviewers would agree that this is, indeed, the best book they have ever read. This is true if they are "not big readers" and it is true if they "have read a lot." ("By many authors," one adds.)

This is a retelling of the Biblical story of Hosea, the prophet who married a prostitute because God told him to. Although his wife kept leaving him and going back to prostitution, Hosea remained faithful to her and in so doing, presented a beautiful picture of God's love for His people. Again and again Hosea went and found his wife and brought her back. In this version, it's Michael Hosea, and the story is set in gold-rush California. This Hosea, too, believes that God asks him to marry a prostitute. He does, and heartache ensues.

I applaud Francine Rivers' motives, and she has succeeded in giving many people a new picture of what God's love looks like, how faithful and unending and persistent it is. I hesitate to be critical of a book that achieves that goal. So I won't.

I'll just say that it isn't the most powerful work of fiction I've ever read.


Troy & Tara Livesay said...

This is Britt's favorite book ... but probably more because it was the first romance story she had ever read ... I think she read it at age 14 maybe 15 ... so I doubt it will stay her favorite forever.

Ruth said...

Clearly everybody in the world liked it better than I did - check out the reviews at Amazon! Almost everyone gave it five stars.

Anonymous said...

You're just too hard on these writers. Personally I think you should probably give up reading and take up listening to the books on CDs or on your IPod while you're walking from home to school. You would probably enjoy the books much more.


Ruth said...

OK, John. I'll keep it in mind! :-)

Really, me giving up reading is like you giving up breathing. That's a slight exaggeration but only slight.