My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Source: Received from Bethany House Publishers to Review
Genre: Historical Christian Fiction
Book Description: It's 1954 and Perla Long's arrival in the small 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 way with food brings both gratitude and condemnation, placing the pair in the middle of a maelstrom of anger and forgiveness, fear and faith.
My thoughts: Realistic and powerful themes are found in the pages of Miracle in a Dry Season. The book is set just after the Korean War and reflects many of the beliefs and customs of the time period.
Perla left her parents home hoping to escape the scorn and gossip surrounding her because she was an an unwed mother. She hoped to give a better life to her daughter, Sadie. She hoped to find peace and happiness in a town where her past was not know and she could be free.
Bad news and gossip followed her to Wise, West Virginia. She soon became the center of animosity when some blamed her for the drought. The pastor suggested that the sinner be exiled from their presence, so God would stop punishing the town. No matter how much she tried to help the people, there are always some who try to put someone else down to make themselves feel better, and Perla was caught in the cycle.
Casewell had dreamed of finding a virtuous woman to settle down with and have a family. Somehow it was Perla that he dreamed of and she soon became the focus of his attention. He couldn't let himself have a future with her, because she was a "fallen woman".
This book centers of the need for understanding, forgiveness, repentance, love, and the destructive power of gossip. I loved the groundwork that Sarah Loudin Thomas laid in showing a small town society where religion is a strong center of the community. Many characters are lovable. Sadie pretty much stole the book for me. Children will often be the teachers of adults, they love unrestrained and are innocent.
I'm grateful for the opportunity that I had to read this book. It has given me a few things to ponder.
There is a novella that takes place in a time period before this book. It is the story of the aunt and Uncle Perla comes to stay with. It is free as an ebook! You may want to give it a try!
About the Author: (Taken from Goodreads) I’m a Christian, wife, fundraiser and writer living near Asheville, NC. I grew up on a 100-acre farm in French Creek, WV. I used to say “rural WV,” but realized that’s largely redundant. I LOVE my home state and the fact that I’m the seventh generation to grow up on the family farm. My love of the Appalachian Mountains informs my writing. I want you to be as wild about these hazy, blue mountains and the wonderful people who live in them as I am.
I’ve been married for eighteen years and I not only love my husband, I really, really like him. We started our journey together with three big dogs–Crockett, Precious and Sammy. We now have one small dog that requires more energy than the first three did together.
This is the first book completed for the Tackle Your TBR Read-a-thon!