Letters from War    -     By: Mark Schultz, Travis Thrasher
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Letters from War

Howard Books / 2011 / Hardcover

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Product Description

Every night, Natalie leaves the front porch light on. Just in case. It's been two years since her son, James, went missing while saving the life of a fellow paratrooper in his division. Natalie's faith has sustained her while she awaits word on her son's whereabouts. Well-meaning friends encourages Natalie to move on, but Natalie continues to hope.

Product Information

Format: Hardcover
Number of Pages: 256
Vendor: Howard Books
Publication Date: 2011
Dimensions: 7.00 X 5.00 (inches)
ISBN: 1439197318
ISBN-13: 9781439197318
Availability: In Stock

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Author Bio

Mark Schultz is a Dove-Award winning artist and has become one of Christian music’s most acclaimed singer/songwriters. He received BMI’s Christian Song of the Year in 2003 for "Back in His Arms Again." Schultz has also tasted success on the mainstream adult contemporary charts with such hits as "He’s My Son," "Letters from War," and "Walking Her Home." Schultz has flooded radio with ten No. 1 songs, such as "Remember Me" and "I Am the Way." He’s also earned the top spot on Billboard magazine’s Christian Adult Contemporary Songwriter list. His 2005 release, Mark Schultz Live . . . A Night of Stories & Songs, sold RIAA certified Platinum and garnered Schultz his first GMA Dove Award. Travis Thrasher is the author of more than twenty works of fiction, including Paper Angels and Letters From War. He has been called "the Nicholas Sparks of Christian fiction" by Christian Retailing magazine. Travis lives with his wife and daughters in a suburb of Chicago.

ChristianBookPreviews.com

The themes present in Letters from War by Mark Schultz and Travis Thrasher are every bit as relevant today as they were when Schultz released a song in 2004 by the same name. Protagonist Beth is someone we can all project ourselves onto the feelings of doubt she has, her unending struggle for faith. Yes, these are issues we all struggle with, and they make the context of the book relational even to those with no military in their family. I'm a wiser person from reading Letters from War, and I believe any reader would be, too.

The book is structured in a very non-conventional, but also very fitting, way. Jumping from letter to narrative, the story is not always sequential but builds emotionally, which really lets the themes of the novel come out especially in the relationship between Beth and her son James. With an emotional build as genuine as this, it climaxes to an extremely emotional ending, which I won't do the disservice of spoiling here.

The main character of the novel is Beth, mother of James, a military private presumed to be dead by everyone except Beth, who holds on to the memory of her son with an intense hope for his return. One can't help but see how this hope is reflective of our own hope for the return of a loved one, Jesus. As it says in Romans 12:12, "Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer." This is how Beth finds hope for son (with letters and her prayers) that is ultimately fulfilled.

There are many interesting characters developed in the novel, but Beth is by far the constant around which all other things unfold. She represents a paragon the readers must be able to test themselves against never faltering from her belief that her son lives, and always making decisions that are right for her and her family. And though she represents this archetype, she isn't an unrealistic or unbelievable character, just a character with a mother’s love.

The power of love is the most resonating theme throughout the book, and you will feel it from the moment you crack open the spine until after you turn the last page. I would recommend Letters from War to anyone and everyone, because all will find the message applies. Lucas Sweitzer, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com

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