I chose Wrapped in Rain by Charles Martin because I wanted a change of pace. The first two books I reviewed as part of the booksneeze.com review program were books I chose to read because I was looking for something. This time, I just wanted to be entertained. I'm not always a fan of religious fiction. That probably sounds like an odd thing for a pastor to say, but I have the same problem with contemporary Christian music, too--too preachy, too touchy-feely, too over-the-top.
I downloaded the book with the intention of maybe reading a few chapters before I would put it down to take care of other things. The other things went by the wayside quickly. I couldn't stop reading--well, other than to feed the bottomless pits known as my children, of course. I finished the book in a single sitting. That's not unusual for me, but I certainly wasn't expecting it in this case.
What can I tell you without giving away the story? Two young boys have an abusive father, a man who gains enormous wealth with liquor distribution rights but then ends up falling prey to the temptation of the very thing he distributes. Wanting little to do with his sons, he hires help to clean the house and keep the boys. Miss Ella is a woman of faith, and she protects the boys as much as she can. The story develops as the boys become adults and have to deal with the aftermath of their tumultuous childhood. One escapes by traveling the world as a photographer; the other is lost inside his own mind. A reunion with a childhood friend brings all their issues to a head. All the while, Miss Ella's faithful influence guides the brothers in a godly way.
Vague enough? My summary doesn't do the book justice. Let me put it this way: this is the best piece of fiction, religious or otherwise, I've read this year. Give it a read. You won't be disappointed.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”