Monday, April 20, 2015

Book Review: Be Still my Soul

Book Overview:  Night’s chill tickled her skin. Lonnie pressed her hands together and glanced up. He was even more handsome up close. Having grown up the shy, awkward daughter of Joel Sawyer, she’d hardly spoken to any boy, let alone the one who had mothers whispering warnings in their daughter’s ears and fathers loading shotguns.
Pretty Lonnie Sawyer is shy and innocent, used to fading into the background within her family, and among the creeks and hollows of the Appalachian hills. Though her family is poor and her father abusive, she clings to a quiet faith.  But when handsome ladies’ man and bluegrass musician Gideon O’Riley steals a kiss, that one action seals her fate. 

Her father forces her into a hasty marriage with Gideon—a man she barely knows and does not love. Equally frustrated and confused by his new responsibilities, Gideon yearns for a fresh start, forcing Lonnie on an arduous journey away from her home in Rocky Knob.

Her distant groom can’t seem to surrender his rage at the injustice of the forced matrimony or give Lonnie any claim in his life.  What will it take for Gideon to give up his past, embrace Lonnie’s God, and discover a hope that can heal their two fractured hearts?

My Review:   Super sweet, christian read!  I fell for both characters - both Lonnie and Gideon and how they were thrust together so unfairly.  God truly has a divine plan for each of us, even if we don't know it at the time.

Be Still My Soul (Cadence of Grace book #1) is a heart-warming, enriching christian novel that entwines the sweet ‘falling in love’ with a faith based foundation.   The story opens with the simple encounter between Lonnie and Gideon and a musical event they both attend in the Blue Ridge Mountains backwoods, simple country life of the mountains.   The author blends a wonderful weave of tale with the time and era and the way of life is described so vividly, I felt as if I were walking through each of the chapters of this book with the characters!

With a simple wrong move by Gideon, influenced heavily by alcohol, Lonnie is deemed ‘tarnished’ by her father and forces the young teens to marry, neither of which is planned or happy about.  Lonnie truly is an innocent and she is caught up in the times of that era and must abide by her Pa’s doing or is considered tarnished for the rest of her life and unmarriageable.  I felt so sad for her when she was forced to be married and go to live with Gideon and his family, and Gideon soon instructs his parents that he is leaving to make it on his own with his new wife.  They are unprepared, have no money and the mishaps just start to pile up.

Be Still My Soul is about the ultimate trial and tribulations for this young couple yet God is always there with them both throughout.  One of the sayings that jumped out at me was when Lonnie's Aunt Sarah told her “don’t you let those lies stay inside you. The only opinion that mattes is God’s and he knows the truth.”  That’s a theme that resonates through this book as does 1 Peter 5:10.

This book is a breath of fresh air to read.  I look forward to reading more of Joanne Bischof’s work in the future!

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