Sunday, December 11, 2011
Healing the Faith by Michele Richard (ARC)
"For Alexia Cross and Justin McNear, things are not what they seem. Both were born and raised in hidden, gated communities. A place where time virtually stands still and marriages are arranged by parents before a child’s 18th birthday.
Alexia is destined to be her community’s first spinster. In a last ditch effort, a husband is found. The only complication? He has no idea he has been betrothed. Will his history of dating outsiders help or hinder his relationship with his future wife?
Justin McNear searched outside his church for the woman of his dreams. Returning home after failing, he knows he needs to rectify his life and his faith. Can a woman he’s never met make him whole again?
Will this couple end up mocked by their own faith? Follow Alexia and Justin through the trials and tribulations of finding, falling, and surviving each other's love. It’s never easy saying “I do” to someone you don’t know."
Well, this is certainly different from what I just said. Probably because I talked about the spoiler, so there were a lot of plot details left unsaid. Now that I've finished talking about the first book, on to the second (which I actually read):
The plot is actually a fairly standard hunt-and-chase type of plot, with a twist at the end that made it really interesting. I think for me, what carried the book more was the characters - Justin and Alexia McNear.
I have to say though, I like Justin as a character much more than Alexia. Although he's obviously deeply damaged, with anger issues and what not, including a major meltdown more than once. But he's still quite endearing, especially looking at how much he loves Alexia, as seen by how he frets about her and basically tries to do whatever she wants (to make her happy).
Alexia on the other hand, was annoying for most of the book. She sees herself as the victim, and constantly annoyed me with her dramatic antics. Even though I didn't understand much about their community, I could see that her actions were fairly out-of-line and could damage Justin. It wasn't until *spoiler alert* her friends finally yelled at her and made her see sense before I could like her as a character.
Since I'm a Christian, let me look at this "obscure faith" of theirs. It seems that they worship angels, specifically those in the Bible. Yet references to books of the Bible imply that they have knowledge and possible have the Bible as one of the books of their faith. What I don't understand is: if they have knowledge of the Bible, why worship something that is not the most powerful or most important i.e. God? But since they're meant to be a gated community, I suppose that I have to accept it as a plot device, although I think theologically it's wrong.
This book is quite sound in terms of plot and character. But personal reasons lead me to be unable to recommend this book without hesitation.