A Dare & A Prayer by Julie Lessman

A Strand Of Three Chords

A Dare & A Prayer by Julie Lessman is a very powerful Christian historical novel and part of The Cousins O’Connor series. It can be read as a stand-alone.

The action begins in 1944 in the Pacific on an American airbase. We go through to the end of the war, and then move stateside for the second half of the novel.

Julie Lessman has produced a tale with some very hard-hitting shocking themes as we see the awful topic of child trafficking and prostitution that has been going on in Japan since the Middle Ages. This shocks the characters and the reader as we see innocence defiled while local people stand by, doing nothing as they are fearful of reprisals. We witness the anger in characters who refuse to stand by and do nothing.

There is the theme of the prodigal son. We follow a character who seems hell bent on self-destruct, as he follows the pleasures of this world. People tell him about God. His family prays for him. He follows his own path until one day the scales fall off. “God was real… He actually cared about every one of His children.”

Sometimes we can fix things for ourselves and sometimes we can’t. It is always good to pray without ceasing about everything. Sometimes the only thing we can do is to pray. “Never had he been nor ever expected to be a praying man. But he planned to pray now.” When we pray, we tap into a power beyond ourselves. God longs to answer our prayers. He always answers in His way, at just the right time. He never shows up early and He is never late.

We were never meant to keep our faith to ourselves. We need to show Jesus to a hurting world in need of a Savior. “Putting feet to her faith.”

There is the theme of forgiveness. Sometimes we cannot forgive in our strength, then we need to press into God, lean on Him and forgive in His strength.

God wants to be part of every area of our lives. He needs to be the third person in our marriages as a chord of three strands isn’t easily broken.

There is the theme of being equally yoked. A character only wants to marry a man who loves God. She fights against attraction and prays for God’s will to be done.

We witness the temptations of alcohol, drugs, pre-marital sex. These seem heightened in times of war when tomorrow is not guaranteed. They are never good for us. God gives us the ten commandments, not to limit us, but to keep us safe.

All the characters were well drawn, likable and realistic. I enjoyed meeting up with familiar faces.

A Dare & A Prayer was not a cosy Christian read. There were hard-hitting themes. It was a powerful and a necessary read that educated me about the war in the Pacific. Thank you Julie Lessman for such a powerful read.

I received a free copy from the author. A favourable review was not required. All opinions are my own.



(Note: Chance to win prize for leaving a comment on each blog)

October 1 — Radiant Light Blog (tease)

October 1 — LiteraryScape Book Club

October 2 — Grace Johnson Spotlight

October 3 — Britt Reads Fiction

October 4 — Where Faith and Books Meet

October 5 — A Baker’s Perspective

October 6 — My Favorite Pastime

October 7 — Reading is My SuperPower

October 8 — Writing Between the Lines

October 9 — Locks, Hooks, and Books

October 10 — Splashes of Joy

October 10 — Saraina Whitney Blog

October 11 — Radiant Light Blog (review) 

October 12 — Miss Pippi Reads Blog

October 13 — Christian Bookaholic

October 14 — Grace Johnson Review

October 15 — Scraps of Life Blog


In honor of A Dare and a Prayer’s book birthday, Julie has two contests going on where you can win the following:

GRAND PRIZE (2 chances to win!):

—$50 Amazon gift card or $25 Amazon gift card

—Choice of three of Julie’s e-books or one of her signed paperbacks

—A character named after you or a loved one in her next book and a signed paperback copy

—Your choice of one paperback from Julie’s list of top-selling CBA authors, including Tamera Alexander, Colleen Coble, Rachel Hauck, Denise Hunter, Robin Lee Hatcher, Nancy Naigle, Cara Putman, Deborah Raney, Katherine Reay, Becky Wade, and Beth Vogt.

RUNNERS-UP PRIZES (8 chances to win!):

—Choice of three of my e-books

—OR choice of one of my signed paperbacks (based on my private stash)

—OR choice of one paperback from a list of the above-mentioned top CBA authors (based on my private stash)

So, check all the details out at her Journal Jots Blog HERE and GOOD LUCK!

Julie Lessman is an award-winning author whose tagline of “Passion With a Purpose” underscores her intense passion for both God and romance. A lover of all things Irish, she enjoys writing close-knit Irish family sagas that evolve into 3-D love stories: the hero, the heroine, and the God that brings them together.

Author of The Daughters of Boston, Winds of Change, Heart of San Francisco, Isle of Hope, Silver Lining Ranch, and The Cousins O’Connor series, Julie was American Christian Fiction Writers 2009 Debut Author of the Year and has garnered over 21 Romance Writers of America and other awards. Voted #1 Romance Author in Family Fictionmagazine’s 2012 and 2011 Readers Choice Awards, Julie’s novels also made Family Fiction magazine’s Best of 2015, Best of 2014, and “Essential Christian Romance Authors” 2017-20, 2021 and 2023, as well as Booklist’s 2010 Top 10 Inspirational Fiction and Borders Best Fiction. Her independent novel A Light in the Window was an International Digital Awards winner, a 2013 Readers’ Crown Award winner, and a 2013 Book Buyers Best Award winner. 

Julie has also written a self-help workbook for writers entitled Romance-ology 101: Writing Romantic Tension for the Sweet and Inspirational Markets. Contact Julie through her website and read excerpts from each of her books at www.julielessman.com.

8 thoughts on “A Dare & A Prayer by Julie Lessman

  1. I so enjoy Julie’s take on the realities of life. It’s so refreshing to see real issues come into play, and they are handled excellently!

  2. Thank you for spotlighting Julie Lessman’s A Dare and A Prayer! Like you I love that Julie’s book makes you think as well as entertain . Julie’s a treasure among writers ,She never hesitates to share her heart as well as her writing talent . Thank you Julie for your amazing stories!!

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