Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Can You Survive Getting Everything You Want?

Mary Lynn and Jackson are living the life they always dreamed of: an historic home in Charleston, social acceptance, money, talented children. For Mary Lynn, something is missing. She is increasingly drawn to the religion of her childhood. On Christmas she attends church and wishes the whole family could share in her awakening. Then an amazing thing happens. Jackson finds Christianity and it takes over his life. It's not the polite church on Sunday religion Mary Lynn has found. When Jackson experiences a conversion, he wants to live the Bible literally. This creates an enormous distance between them putting the survival of their marriage in doubt.

Charleston SC is on of my favorite places. Beth Webb did an excellent job drawing her readers into the setting. Unfortunately, that was the best part of the book. The book starts very slowly with lots of back story. The characters are introduced in their affluent life style, but realistic tension is missing. In fact, the story doesn't take off until after Jackson's conversion and Mary Ann's horror at the change in their social status.

Although I think the premise is an interesting one, how fully must a Christian live their faith, I found the treatment in this book lackluster. The characters weren't particularly interesting, the narrative was fully of flashbacks and internal monologue as well as back story, and the ending while satisfying from the standpoint of resolving the main character's issues felt rushed and unrealistic.

I can't really recommend this book unless you love reading about Charleston, SC.

I reviewed this book as part of the Thomas Nelson Booksneeze Program.