Click. The camera closes in on a woman in a hospital bed. The tubes and machines indicate that shes fighting for her life. But is she?Click. A man waits at her bedside, remembering.Click. A college friendship blooms into the love God planted long before.Click. The pain of a genetic curse of blindness deepens with the revelation of past secrets and present betrayal.These scenesand many moremake Beyond the Night the stuff movies are made of. We follow author Marlo Schaleskys camera of words as she records the love-memories of Paul and Maddy. Through vivid description, realistic dialogue, and judicious use of flashbacks, she unwinds a story that combines the power of enduring love with the angst of hidden wounds, the depth of true-to-life characters with a page-turning storyline.The imperfections of Schaleskys characters help us identify with each one. Their tender, tangled relationships remind us of our own lives. And the books surprising, hope-filled conclusion draws us back to the essentials.At times, the author said a little too much. I wanted to draw my own conclusions about Paul and Maddy, and she made most of them for me. But I find that a minor flaw in a work that delighted and inspired me. I hope to read more from Marlo Schalesky and look forward to my next opportunity to look through her multifaceted lens.
I laughed and I cried, and then I cried some more. This book is about friendship, love, sacrafice, and hope. Paul stands by Maddie in her darkest hour to her finest moment. He never gave up on her and he was reminded that Jesus loved Maddie more than he ever could. That gave him the courage to go for true love.This book had me in tears most of the time.
The person who gave this book two stars very clearly did not understand this book, it's message and how the storyline went. I won't go into too much detail because I would spoil the ending for a future reader. I COULD NOT put this book down. It is beautifully written and with tremendous insight from this author. We should all be a brave as the heroine and the author. It has a kicker of an ending and you will need a box of tissues. The only two authors that have ever touched me this much are Karen Kingsbury and Francine Rivers.
Youve read them before: boy meets girl, boy and girl become friends, boy and girl resist their friendship developing into anything more, and so on. The stubborn love story, wherein the characters refuse to acknowledge and/or embrace their love for each other. Beyond the Night by Marlo Schalesky is on one level such a story, but it develops into so much more.I am not typically a reader of romance stories; I can assure you that this is not your typical light and fluffy romantic fare. Paul and Maddies struggles with the imminent loss of vision and faith, and their own shortcomings add depth and meaning to the story of their love. I was relieved to find that the tale of their developing affections free them from sensual engagements. Too many romantic stories are mired in the promise or acts of physical intimacy, the reason I normally avoid the genre.I was drawn to this title for several reasons the assurance that the characters involved would marry, the spiritual struggle and theme of spiritual darkness brought on by the blindness and the promise of a surprise ending - I couldnt resist. Schalesky doesnt disappoint on any of these counts. Many would feel that a story in which you know the outcome of relationship would be without suspense or uncertainty. Countless titles offer formulaic and predictable endings; a skillful author, Schalesky succeeded in taking me by surprise with the books conclusion.Read it for the love story, the spiritual struggle, or the surprise ending, but do read it. Paul and Maddies deep and enduring love along with their faith in God overcomes their fears and takes them Beyond the Night. You wont want to miss this one. Ill be watching for future releases from Schalesky, who is writing more titles with unexpected endings.P.S. This is one youll want to share with your girlfriends.
Marlo Schaleskys Beyond the Night beautifully tells the story of Maddie and Paul. Beginning with an automobile accident, the author weaves the characters pasts with their present to bring the reader to several spiritual revelations. Some of these truths include the fact that righteous lives are not free of trouble, looking for God when you cant easily see Him makes Him more evident in painful circumstances. Schalesky effectively shares how much Jesus loves us, and brings to light how we can love others well.This is a thoughtfully written novel that really made me think about how and why God has answered my prayers as He has. The characters circumstances made me grateful for my own position in life. It showed me that fear is a thief that will rob me of life if I allow it to do so. The book also contains a thought-provoking list of discussion questions. This would be a wonderful reading group pick!