I am a voracious Christian Romance novel reader, and last month when I picked this up, I thought it would just be another : boy meets girl, boy falls in love, girl doesn't like him, something awful happens and they end up together etc. (All at the young age of 17...)
Well this wasn't.
From the opening page, Mrs. Lessman had my complete and utter attention riveted on every single descriptive word she used. The feelings, the emotions, the agony of never being together, and especially the jealousy between Faith and Charity was SO REAL. Every chapter held something new - a bit of information I had overlooked that suddenly became crucial to the story (WWI). Or handsome, old(ish) newspaper editor *whew*. I was practically screaming at Faith to go to France and FIND COLLIN.
Collin's conversion really got me too. Many transformations in CF books can seem artificial and sappy, but this one just struck me as real. Maybe it was the heart-wrenching emotions of the loss of his father (and what he believes are his dreams), or maybe it was how he became a good person, but was still flawed. It was probably the flawed - that really sticks with me.
Overall, this book seemed to emulate real life more than any other CF novel I've read. The long time period over which the book took place didn't seem too long or rambley, but described the events like recalling a memory. The passion, too was also something that made the book seem real. There are many CF novels about good, upstanding moral people staying close to God in relationships, but are there any about flawed men and women? Especially books with a female lead who really, really, really likes a guy - but she can't do anything..
But then he kisses her.
And she realizes that the welfare of his soul is more important than his kisses.
That's the message I got from A Passion Most Pure.
And believe me - that message, so wonderfully delivered, is rare in the CF world of 'perfect romance'. Try a flawed CF romance, and you won't ever look at CF the same way again.
Thanks Mrs. Lessman, for a wonderful, joyous, and *passionate* read!
Reviewed by a teenage girl - so this is awesome for the older teens (15+) I found it really good in the fact that it had temptation, but Faith made the right choice in those times (about 2) and helped lead those who didn't have God in their lives out of temptation and up to a Personal Savior.
I thoroughly enjoyed A Passion Most Pure! Julie is an excellent storyteller and writer! Be prepared, though; if you read the first book, you will be hooked and will have to read all the others as well!
The Daughters of Boston series follows the O'Connor family through just before WWI to the early 1920s. Their story is also continued in the Winds of Change series. It's obvious how much research Julie puts into all of her books. All of the details make it seem as though you are actually there, watching everything play out.
I enjoyed how it came from several different points of view, so you know what everyone was thinking and what was going on in each character's life. It wasn't confusing at all, which was rather surprising to me. I thought the changing views would make the book seem jumbled, but it didn't. I loved that this wasn't just Faith's book. Julie brings a whole family to life within this book.
Everyone seemed very real, which was great! Julie didn't make them like the characters in a traditional romance novel. They were realistic, without being over done. Each person had their own struggles and while I occasionally wanted to slap them and tell them to get it together, they eventually found their way. I loved Faith and her stand. She would not compromise her morals, no matter how tempted. She continually fought to live for God. Even in conflict, when that would have been the easy way out, she finds her way.
I also enjoyed seeing Collin grow and change. His friend Brady was great and I loved how he gently pointed Collin in the right direction. My favorite part may have been when he finally accepted God and learned what living by faith and loving God wholeheartedly is all about.
I love how grounded in God Julie's books are. Many times, the story was more about a "romance" with God, rather than between 2 people. The book really challenged me to learn more about Him, to become more passionate about knowing and loving Him, and to stand with Him no matter the trials I may face.
I fell in love with the O'Connors and will be sad to see their story end.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves Christian romance.
Faith has been infatuated with Colin since she was young, but it is Charity, her sister and constant rival, that catches his eye. When they become engaged Faith faints. What lies just ahead, though, is WW I which will change their lives forever. Faith finds happiness, and Charity, true to her character, ruins it.
I don't want to give spoilers so will leave it at that. I grew up in a large family, and our friends came from large families- up to 12. Never did I see such rivalry in real life between siblings. It was downright hatred and over the top. I never liked Colin...even at the end there isn't anything to endear him to me as a reader. The ending was expected, but I must admit I was disappointed with it. More "true love" and less lust would have been nice, too.
I did like the peak into WWI. Most books I've read that deal with world wars follow the second one. It was a quick enjoyable read that I would recommend to friends my age. I would not however recommend it for the YA crowd. It falls short in really telling of a pure passion.
There is so much going on in this book, I don't even know where to start! This book mainly focuses on Faith O'Conner and Collin McGuire. I absolutely loved Faith's character. Her sweet nature and forgiving spirit is one I would gladly like to imitate. Her love for God is strong and true, and again something I would like to imitate in my own life. She exudes confidence, even as she is witnessing to someone. Collin McGuire is a rake. He is sweet and gentle, yet hard and cocky all at the same time. He is looking for love in all the wrong places, when the obvious answer for him is right in front of his eyes. How is it possible that I love him and hate him all at the same time?!
The conflict between Faith and her sister Charity is one I can relate to, just not to the same depth of hatred Charity apparently has for her sister. I have a sister; we fought many times, but I never would have done some of the things Charity did to Faith, ever. The plot was fast-moving, and at times heart-wrenching. I was weeping at certain points of the story, laughing out loud at others, and so mad at Collin or Faith or Charity I wanted to scream! I couldn't put it down! As a matter of fact, I read it through in one day!
The message of the story is two-fold. For Faith, it was learning to trust in God no matter the circumstances in your life. Relying on His peace and grace in the midst of the storm as well as in the good times of your life. For Collin, it was learning to place your trust in a higher power. Learning that God wasn't a cruel God or a mocking God. He is a God of love and he wants what's best for his children.
Overall, I absolutely loved this book. I loved the plot, the message, and the characters. I can't wait to read the next book in the Daughters of Boston series!