Recently, I received from BookSneeze.com a copy of the eBook, Beauty for Ashes by Dorothy Love. The past few books I’ve read from Book Sneeze I haven’t been thrilled with. I’m glad to say that I really enjoyed this one!
This story takes place shortly after the Civil War during a time of economic depression in the south. Carrie, a young widow who is determined and devoted to her Lord, is enamored when Griff rolls into town. Though a Charleston gentleman, Griff is secretive and the ladies of Hickory Ridge look down upon Carrie for her kindness to him. Weighted down with struggles in her family and her friendships, Carrie constantly falls back on her Lord. She is reminded of her grandmother’s Biblical wisdom and strong faith. Though circumstances seem impossible, the grace of God overcomes all and gives beauty in the place of life’s many ashes for both Carrie and Griff.
This is definitely a book written for the ladies! I don’t often read romance novels. Too often they can lead to sin as they depict overly romantic men or overly sensual relationships. Dorothy Love did a fabulous job of telling a tale of love that focused on faith, instead of the people. Her characters do not seem extreme in any way. As they face trials of various kinds, they respond as people do — sometimes with great faith, sometimes in their own strength, and sometimes wavering between the two. Though there wasn’t much word for word Scripture, Biblical Truth is woven throughout the story. The culmination of the story brings God glory as He is shown to be the cause of wrongs made right, the source of genuine love shown in difficult circumstances, and sovereignly orchestrating all events for His purposes. Through the story, characters grow more Christ-like, spurn one another on in love, and encourage one another in faith. This book didn’t leave me thirsting for the next in the series, but it was a pleasant diversion for a few hours one day and left me longing to love others sacrificially as Christ loves His Church and as illustrated in the book.