Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A Southern Soap Opera

In Softly and Tenderly, Jade describes her life as living in a Southern soap opera. It's a very apt description of this book. Jade is caught in the middle of some of life's most difficult challenges. Her mother is dying; her in-laws are torn by infidelity; and her husband has an illegitimate child he hopes she'll raise. As if things weren't bad enough, he's also addicted to pain killers, and someone runs into one of her stores and destroys it.

Although the novel deals with a plethora of difficult issues, it does it with sensitivity and caring. Throughout her ordeal, Jade is still able to cling to her faith and find comfort in Jesus. I enjoyed the characters. Beryl, Jade's mother, is a aging hippie who has managed to lead her own life, right up to the end. Her mother-in-law, June, is another interesting character. She's led the rich sheltered life of the wife of a successful attorney, but now she has to deal with his infidelity and her own dark secrets.

I recommend this book if you like romance. It's a fast read, the characters are enjoyable and while it could become maudlin, it generally avoids that pitfall.

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