Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Restorer's Journey - My Review

I just finished this wonderful book, and couldn't wait to post my review! This is a terrific read!

This book has been the most unexpected pleasure I have experienced since I began my blogging adventure back in the Fall. I am very quick to let folks know that I don’t read fantasy – don’t understand fantasy – can’t keep fantasy characters and places straight in my head while I’m reading….I’m just not a fantasy person. Sharon Hinck’s book has given me hope to keep trying to wrap my brain around this genre! This book was wonderful!!

I suppose what appealed to me at first was that the main characters were based in the 21st century reality that I live in, and many of their points of reference were familiar to me. Their faith, their experiences in the “real” world helped me to understand their actions and reactions in the alternate world of Lyric on the other side of the portal. More thrilling yet was that once the main characters (Susan and Jake) entered Lyric and the surrounding areas, I was able to follow the story easily despite the fact that I hadn’t read the first two books of this series. I cannot tell you how exciting this was for me! I truly enjoyed this story!

I loved the way these characters wrestled within themselves as they tried to follow where the One was leading them. On page 101 Susan’s mind asks the questions: “How many times in my life had I done this dance with God? Asking Him for direction, then promptly arguing when I sensed His guidance.” Much later in the book, on page 228, her son Jake wrestles with obedience; “I had followed the guidance I’d received then and every day since. And everything had gone wrong. Time to make my own decision.” Even though these characters were dealing with fantasy characters and events, their frame of reference was still that of a Christian in personal relationship with God through Christ. Because of this, the alternate world of Lyric was an echo – a beautiful reworking – of the gospel story. It was very moving to me to watch the sacrificial decisions that these folks had to reach in the course of their journey!

Another feature in the book that appealed to me personally was the poetry. Page 244 features these words: Awesome in majesty
Is the One eternal.
Perfect in His might and power,
The only truth and only source,
He made all that is and loves all He made;
His works are beyond our understanding.

Isn’t that beautiful? There are several other passages just as lovely! Jake’s character is this wonderful blend of frustrated young man, budding hero, closet poet and beloved son. Most of the story in this book is told from his point of view, and I really enjoyed watching him reach his own assurances of faith and confidence in his obedience to follow the One. As a mom of two teens, I could relate to a lot of his struggle, and I am eager to share this book with my own sons!

You really must read this book as well as the other two books in the series, The Restorer, and The Restorer’s Son. I know I will be eagerly back-tracking to read these myself! I just can’t express how much I enjoyed this adventure! Thank you Sharon!! What a wonderful and pleasant surprise to this non-fantasy reader!


M. C. Pearson said...

Great review! You know, I'm going to have to have you read my YA fantasy to see if you understand it!

Sharon Hinck said...

I am SO honored that you would try out a fantasy novel even when you haven't loved the genre before...AND that you would dive right in with the third book. I'm delighted that the themes resonated with you. God is so faithful to us as we grapple with the challenges of following Him, isn't He? Thank you SO much for sharing your feelings about the story. Blessings!