Sarah Loudin Thomas' debut novel is a delightful read. I loved the cover with its simplistic picture filled with so much hope and promise. That's exactly what this book leaves with you.
Publisher's Blurb: In a Drought, It's the Darkest Cloud That Brings Hope
It's 1954 and Perla Long's arrival in the sleepy town of Wise, West Virginia, was supposed to go unnoticed. She just wants a quiet, safe place for her and her daughter, Sadie, where the mistakes of her past can stay hidden. But then drought comes to Wise, and Perla is pulled into the turmoil of a town desperately in need of a miracle.
Casewell Phillips has resigned himself to life as a bachelor...until he meets Perla. She's everything he's sought in a woman, but he can't get past the sense that she's hiding something. As the drought worsens, Perla's unique gift divides the town in two, bringing both gratitude and condemnation, and placing the pair in the middle of a storm of anger and forgiveness, fear and faith.
The story of Perla and Casewell infiltrated my heart with its simple but profound message. We are all forgiven. *If we choose to accept it.*
The characters in the story were well rounded individuals. I enjoyed them all - even crusty ol' John. He grows on you as he travels his own journey of understanding and accepting the greatest gift of all. But truly my favorite was the little child, Sadie. I flipped the last page of the book still believing she was the true miracle in the story. Now I hope those aren't spoilers. All that to say Loudin Thomas did a marvelous job of introducing fine characters that came alive within the story, growing in their struggles and in their faith.
That brings me to the next praise - the faith of the story. Loudin Thomas is not shy in her display of God in this book. Some might criticize this, but not me. I love a book that digs deep into the heart of God and the faith journey of the characters. Yet, the message remains simple - forgiveness is available to all, no matter what you've done.
The setting of the story did not stand out, but was woven nicely through the story with the dialogue and the characters.
This delightful story takes the reader on a journey of acceptance and understanding. The plot moves like a gentle flowing stream. Unlike the premise of the story, the plot does not dry up! Although it isn't the type of story that kept me up late at night, reading into the wee hours of the morning, it pulled my reader's heart through page after page to find the sweet ending.
Overall, a very pleasant and encouraging read! Check it out! There is an excerpt for you to try at the Publisher's webpage. Also, an interesting note is that Sarah Loudin Thomas wrote a novella, Appalachian Serenade that is available on Kindle. (It is free at the time of writing this post.) It is the story of Delilah, Perla's Aunt in Miracle in a Dry Season. Available for you as well is a video of the author. Check them both out!
Thanks to Graf Martin, Bethany House Publishers and the author for my free copy of this book. I received it in exchange for my honest review. I am not required to review it positively.