Oh, how hard it was for me to pick a prompt this week! Nothing seemed to fit. But, I was determined, so I finally picked number 1.

1.) Book review! What are you reading this summer?

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Though I don’t normally like to write book reviews. As it is definitely outside of my comfort zone. So many other people do it so well. Such as Tiffany over at Elastamom.com . I decided a little stretch and discomfort might be good for me.

Anyway, here I go…

Silver Lining

( You can click on the picture above to link to the Amazon listing for this book.)

“Silver Lining”, by Ann Goering is the last of a series called “Mothers of Glendale.” Which is a follow up to the original “Glendale” series. Both series have three books in them. I definitely encourage you to read from the beginning. The first book is simply entitled “Glendale.” I’ve read all of them on my Kindle app on my phone. You can get them all for only $3.99 a piece.

“Silver Lining” is the one I’ve read most recently, and it took me quite a while to read it. Not because it was slow or boring, but because, as I’ve said before, I’ve had a hard time concentrating on reading lately, though it remains my favorite hobby. Though by simple counts of time put in, many would say TV and Facebook are my favorite hobbies.

This book tells the story of Joe’s Mom, Hannah, and her husband, Chris. Hannah is diagnosed with cancer, and the whole family watches her go through the struggle of accepting that she has cancer and dealing with the treatment. They are a family of faith, so they all pray fervently, with full faith, for her recovery. The outcome is astounding, and very beautiful. I bookmarked several pages toward the end, so that I could go back and read some startlingly beautiful passages. Here is one of them:

Chris’s green eyes searched her face. ‘how are you so calm right now?”

“I don’t know,” she admitted. “All I know is that I’m sure that my Jesus is alive, and I’m sure that He is powerful enough to heal me today. I feel confident that if He doesn’t…that He is still trustworthy and good. He has spent my entire lifetime revealing Himself to me, showing me who He is…His character. I cannot forget that now. I can’t. Not even in the face of this. Even when I feel full of fear and despair, I cannot forget who He has been all these years…who I know Him to be.”

This is a fantastic theological revelation! How does one trust in God when surrounded with horror, fear and pain. Hannah shows grace under fire beautifully in this moment as well as the whole book. The evidence has proven that God is good. Her trust in Him is unshakable.

This book is obviously Christian fiction. And, I love LOTS of Christian fiction. But, Ann Goering is one of my favorites along with Terri Blackstock, Karen Kingsbury and Dee Henderson (particularly the O’Malley series).

What I love most about Goering’s books is the searing realism. She doesn’t shy away from the humanity of her characters and their sin nature. Her books are raw and shocking at moments, which makes her characters that much more lovable and knowable. Though this wasn’t my favorite book of the six, it was actually my least favorite I think, it was still a beautiful read. And, worth it to say goodbye to all of the characters.

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