The first installment of Allison Pittman's The Sister Wife Series is a poignant introduction to Camilla Deardon's story that will resonate with readers long after the last word is read. For Time & Eternity introduces readers to Camilla's journey from her Christian home to life in a Mormon community. Captivated by the handsome and charming Nathan Fox, Camilla chooses to leave her strict home and embrace the love offered by Nathan and his fellow Mormons. While her marriage and family flourishes in the beginning, the less ideal aspects of the Mormon faith are soon unveiled. For Time & Eternity is a story of love, faith, and sacrifice, and Camilla must make challenging and life-changing decisions.
I have been a fan of Allison Pittman's work since reading her first novel, Ten Thousand Charms, and I have enjoyed each of her novels. For Time & Eternity tops my 2010 reading list. Allison Pittman delves into a theological subject matter without creating novel that is too "preachy" or heavy. Camilla's story intrigued me from the first page and kept me engrossed until the very end. I empathized with Camilla's plight and mourned her losses. The novel lingers in my mind and I often discuss it with my sister, who also read the novel. Very rarely am I so moved by a novel, and I am anxiously awaiting the next chapter in Camilla's life. For Time & Eternity is not a light read. In fact, it can be somewhat heartbreaking, but it is indescribably moving. This is a must-read novel that will long remain on my bookshelf and in my heart.
This is my first novel by Allison Pittman, and she gets 3 cheers for such a well written, in depth, emotionally and spiritually charged story that keeps you turning the pages well past bedtime! The detail is enough that you have a clear picture of the depth of Camilla's struggle both spiritually and emotionally with the Mormon doctrine. I actually found myself loudly claiming...."NOOOOOO...." as she realized her husband took a second wife. It is a novel that will not soon be forgotten...and you know what website I'll be on when the sequel comes out in 2011!
Allison Pittman can flat write a book...period. If it had not been for a suggestion from a friend of mine several years ago, I doubt I would've ever discovered Allison's books. Since then, though, I've become a fan through and through. Her historical novels always seem to have some a little different from all the rest--sometimes, it's unique characters, but almost always, it's a story that pulls at my emotions from start to finish.
For Time and Eternity was a novel I wanted to read from the first moment I read the description. I've been on a little bit of a kick with this particular book "style" lately, and I knew Allison's take on this point in history would not disappoint. It also helped that she had first-hand knowledge of the Mormon church and their practices. Now, I'm not Mormon, I don't know any Mormons, but I do have a basic knowledge of their beliefs. What really saddens me is how many people were drawn into this religion in it's early years, maybe before they were fully aware of what they were getting into. Honestly, what sane woman wants to share her husband? Um, not me. Thankfully, as a church they have eliminated all practices of polygamy, but it's still a part of their history. Now, only the FLDS (Fundamentalist Latter-Day Saints) participate in polygamy.
I felt all of Camilla's emotions through this entire book. Camilla had more on her young shoulders than most people have when they're twice her age, and she had so many decisions that she had to make...some that were split-second. One came when she had to choose between her parents and this new boy, Nathan Fox. She barely knew him, and she didn't understand why her parents didn't want her around him. After time, their reasons became very clear. And thankfully, Camilla's mother insisted that she read her Bible daily, and journal a verse every day. This early nurturing in Scripture would be the difference maker in Camilla's adult, married life.
If you decide to read For Time and Eternity, let me warn you that this is not your typical novel--not just because it has both Mormon and Christian elements, but because it will literally have your emotions on overdrive from page one through to the very end. It was an excellent story that was heartbreaking, but beautifully told. My only complaint was that it didn't last long enough!