Apr. 7, 2016

Crooked Lines by Holly Michael

***** 5 stars

Heart-Wrenching, Hauntingingly Beautiful...

Heart-wrenching. Tear-jerking. And hauntingly beautiful, as two very distinct individuals' lives on two continents are presented,juxtaposed against opposing cultures, yet with a common thread. Holly Michael serves up two lives in Crooked Lines, one of American Rebecca, who lives a life of tragedy upon tragedy. When Rebecca's special needs little sister dies, her family turns dysfunctional and Rebecca seems to lose her way in life, choice upon choice. Holly also introduces us to Sagai Raj,who starts down the long journey to priesthood. The harder and more compassionate Sagai becomes, the more the church leaders seem determined to undermine his efforts and to blacklist him. Yet Sagai has been taught blind obedience to the church.

The real question comes in, can one please God, yet disobey the Church? Is the church the pure arm of God, or can some serve him in that possibly restrictive avenue, while others find God's Will in a path separate from the church, while still representing Christ's pure love? While God hates divorce, is there ever a time for it? The Church needs to be very careful to make the truth attractive, rather than a hindrance by making life all about laws that no one can keep on his own.

Father Michael is the ribbon that ties the two ends together. It is he who urges Sagai to join the priesthood and he comes to America and becomes a pen pal confidant to Rebecca. He is a constant in the midst of the storm of both protagonists' stormy lives.

Says Father Michael:"Peace is not a place. It's in your heart. Peace is when you are living the life God intended you to live."
and...
"However life gets entangled, entwined, God straightens the lines because he loves us."

Due to subject matter, I would give this book a PG-13. But What an excellent story of real life, real dilemmas, and soul searching it is! Absolutely fabulous! Out to find the sequel!

I had bought this book before I also was gifted the book through bookfun.org in exchange for an honest review.