Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Not Vegetarian Fare

I love books with meat, stories that dare to touch on taboo subjects in the Christian market or deal with those topics from a different angle. These novels aren't safe, feel good stories, but gritty, see-what-God-can-do-with-our-dirt type of story. Give me a book that shows God's redemption in broken, filthy lives, and you'll have me hooked.

The problem is finding those books in today's market, but I have read a few this  year that are worth the mention.

Exposed by Ashley Weis tackles a subject that has become a big problem in today's society: pornography. What would yo do if you discovered your spouse was hooked on pornography? Where is God when that happens? And being a Christian doesn't make someone immune to the lure. And what about the young women on the screen? Aren't they children of God too? Ashley Weis gently and poignantly addresses all aspects of pornography's snare in Exposed. No, it's not an easy read, but it's an important one.

Never Without Hope by Michelle Sutton. Christian fiction is replete with stories about women whose husbands commit adultery. Typically, those stories are one-sided and paint the husband as a no-good, cheating, dead-beat dad and the story is about a woman who rises above her victimhood. But, rarely is adultery shown as an issue caused by both spouses, and rarer yet does the story deal with the adulterous wife. In Never Without Hope, Michelle Sutton breaks all those stereotypes. The story is about a woman who commits adultery, but Sutton's careful to show both the wife's and the husband's side of the issue, and that's what gives this story teeth.

Priceless: A Novel on the Edge of the World by Tom Davis. Human trafficking is one of the most dire problems our society faces in today's world and it's growing rapidly. In Priceless, Tom Davis puts a face on those involved in trafficking: the girls enslaved in it and the warriors who fight to free those caught. It's obviously a difficult read and it's an eye-opener. But, Davis also shows God's glowing power of redemption among all the ugliness.


  1. Wow -- what 'meaty' a line up! (says the vegetarian!) One that I would also think fits the line up would be Code Triage. I though Calvert did a fantastic job of getting deep into the issues of that struggling marriage. And she played fair. I could see how the way both Nick and Leigh were raised affected their expectations and abilities to function in a marriage and how the lack of communication -- trying to bury the past instead of confront it -- kept them at odds. It really wasn't a book about blame but one about understanding.

  2. Excellent addition, Kav. Candace Calvert did a very good job (in CODE TRIAGE) in portraying both sides of marital discord. Her male protagonist was multi-dimensional and not at all stereotypical. A very good book and, in my opinion, the best in her Mercy Hospital series.

  3. Thanks for the mention, Brenda. Believe it or not women are thankful for a story that tells both sides, even if that means women are the ones doing wrong. I've even had women who were bitter regarding their husband's cheating (who also divorced them) tell me it actually helped their healing process to see things from a different perspective.

  4. You're welcome, Michelle. Marriage problems are rarely one-sided and, as writers, I think it's our responsibility to portray the problems truthfully. I can understand how women would tell you that knowing both sides of the issue has helped them, otherwise, it would be way to easy to hold on to bitterness.

    Thanks for stopping by, Michelle. I pray you have a Joyous Christmas.