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.