The Blue Cloak by Shannon McNear

Horrifying

The Blue Cloak by Shannon McNear is part of the True Colours series. It is a Christian historical novel and set in 1797.

Shannon McNear has woven her tale around true facts that are horrifying and evil. The novel concerns two serial killers who raped, tortured and murdered, spreading terror all around. They were depraved with three wives between them who were forced to stay through fear.

The atmosphere of terror has been perfectly captured by Shannon McNear as she relates a time of pure evil. This book is not for you if you are easily offended. The world is not always a nice place.

There were moments of light as characters looked to God through prayer. “Prayer is our best course under any circumstances.” Prayer is powerful, changing hearts and giving a peace that passes understanding.

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The Five by Hallie Rubenhold

Bringing The Women To Life

The Five by Hallie Rubenhold is a comprehensive look at the five victims of Jack the Ripper during the ‘autumn of terror’ in 1888.

Hallie Rubenhold has brought the women to life as she has examined their lives from birth onwards and presented her findings. The women were so much more than just the Ripper’s victims. They were wives, mothers, daughters, sisters and friends.

We hear so much speculation about Jack the Ripper but we largely forget about his victims, lumping them together as women of the night, drunkards, living in poverty. And yes, while some of these labels may apply, we must remember that these victims were women first. Yes they did live in poverty but so did millions of others. Yes, drink was a problem in the nineteenth century and yes they may have turned to prostitution as a means to survive but that is no reason to kill them. These women were victims of circumstance, living in poverty, doing what they had to, to survive. They did not deserve to have their lives snuffed out.

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Turning Tide by Melody Carlson

Endings And Beginnings

Turning Tide by Melody Carlson is a marvellous Christian historical novel and part of the Legacy Of Sunset Cove series. It can be read as a stand-alone but I would recommend reading the previous novels first.

The action is set in 1917 as America is entering World War I. I enjoyed catching up with familiar faces. Some characters are already at the Front, others are draft dodgers and others are excluded from serving but wish this were not the case. “It’s just hard to stand by and watch.”

Women on the home front do what they can to support the war effort including selling liberty bonds.

The men suffer at the Front. The women suffer on the home front as they worry about their men. They need to entrust their worries to God. “It’s better to pray than to worry.” The reader is reminded that we are to worry about nothing and to pray about everything, only by trusting God will receive a supernatural peace in spite of circumstances.

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Return To Edisto by Lin Stepp

The Rest Is Just Gravy

Return To Edisto by Lin Stepp is a delightful, heart-warming contemporary Christian novel. It is the second book in the Edisto Trilogy but can be read as a stand-alone.

The reader immediately feels at home with the characters in the novel. We can sense the chemistry between the two lead characters and there is a wonderful feeling of community. Edisto is the place where everyone knows your name, and love and care are the order of the day. Your private business is in the public domain but it is a small price to pay in exchange for the community spirit.

“The island is a good place for healing.” Edisto, with its small town charm, spreads a blanket of love and compassion over the hurting.

Sometimes life pulls us away from God. “You might be mad at Him right now… but it’s you that’s distanced yourself from Him.” We sometimes transfer our feelings about others onto God. “Don’t be assigning blame to God for things He didn’t do.” God’s character is love. He will never hurt or reject us. He is with us in the good and the bad times, we just need to seek Him. “It’s never too late to come back to God.” No matter where we’ve been, no matter what we’ve done, we will never be out of reach of the Father’s arms.

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