Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Caregiver by Shelly Shepard Gray

I have enjoyed Shelly Shepard Gray's writing for some time, and was happy for the opportunity to read her newest book- The Caregiver.  While I always expect a great story, written with Shelly's signature warmth and Amish style; I wasn't expecting a story about a spousal abuse victim, especially not an Amish abuse victim.  I know that the Amish are a peace loving people, but Shelly reminds us that no matter what the outward appearance, humans are a fallen species- sinners in need of a Saviour.  She tackles themes along the lines of, "If God is good, why does He allow such awful things to happen in this world?" (The character Lucy was brutally abused by her husband.) and "If God is love, how come I can't feel it through the pain and suffering of a physical illness such as breast cancer?".  (The character, Mattie is fighting for her life.)

Whether it's the loneliness of a bad marriage, or physical pain, depression can hover like a stealth bomber, just waiting to encompass it's victims.  But, is this a book about abuse, depression, cancer and despair?  Although those are some of the challenges facing the characters; this book is about hope.  Life affirming hope that overcomes, is victorious, and conquers the darkness with the gentle light of love.

This story takes place in the Spring, and although it starts out in a storm, the sun comes out to warm the earth, and our hearts as we are encouraged by the quiet strength of Lucy, the abuse survivor, and Mattie, the feisty young woman battling breast cancer.

Sometimes the caregivers need someone to take care of them.  

This is book one in the Families of Honor series.  This is Shelly's best writing yet.  


Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

You make this book so very intriguing. I know many women friends facing similar difficulties right now.

Rachna Chhabria said...

Family of Honor series is such a wonderful series title. And your review is making the book an intriguing one.

Cheryl Klarich said...

Hi Susan. Great to have you visit!
I'm sorry that you have friends going through some tough circumstances. I'm so glad they have you to talk to. Often, as in the case of the character Lucy, people know things aren't good, but don't want to "butt in" or over-react... Hard to know what to do sometimes...

This book was about friendship, and healing. Things most women have need of, along with a "safe place".

Blessings. And prayers for your friends.

Cheryl Klarich said...

Rachna, you are such a dear one. I think you would love this book.

Big hugs to you!

Elle Strauss said...

Sounds like a compelling read! I admire authors who can take on tough subject with so much grace.

Cheryl Klarich said...

Hi Elle!
Thank you for stopping by. Shelly is an excellent story teller. It's like her niceness comes through in her books. I love that.