Susan's story reads like fiction. Powerful, compelling, yet with the authenticity of her own harsh reality. The high point for me, perhaps, was the turning point of forgiveness, but this is closely followed by Joe's repentance. A story of grace and renewal, and yes, HOPE--the "purple cow" variety.
It is every woman's nightmare. You marry an attentive giver of lavish gifts only to find he is a controlling, possessive and threatening man.
Susan shares the romance, the wedding, and the marriage with Joe. While he had been a gentlemen in courting her, he became a possessively jealous man, threatening her life if she could not account for every minute of her day. He began to drink heavily. Susan persevered in the marriage and two children became part of the family. Then she learned of his infidelity with their recent au pair.
Susan was conflicted. She wanted the marriage to last but when her daughter began having nightmares of daddy hurting mommy, she knew it was time to act. She planned every detail of her escape. With the help of others, she and her children moved to a safe place. Then the legal battle for custody ensued. Though the journey was rough, Susan and her children made it safely to a new life.
Susan became a Christian during her marriage. She is quick to point out her dependence on God for her strength and preservation. She is also so grateful to those who helped her in her drastic time of need. She also gives God the credit for her ability to forgive. Her tone in the book is not one of bitterness or anger - just honesty.
Susan notes at the end of her book that, though this has been "her" journey, she believes "in reality it is His story; it is a reminder that God still performs miracles, he still answers prayers, and He still very much cares about each one of us." (224)
This is a hard book to read. It is hard to read about the terror a controlling and threatening man can instill in his wife,. Yet it is also an encouraging book. It is a book about possibilities, about no longer being trapped by our past, by pain, by guilt, or by shame. (226) Those facing circumstances similar to Susan's will find hope in its pages.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through the B&B Media Group for the purpose of this review.
Susan Call not only shares the heartache of her marriage, but the years of healing and finally reaching a place of forgiveness. This book grabbed me from beginning to end. I highly recommend A Search For Purple Cows if you are an abuse survivor, minister to the abused, or desire to read a memoir of God's amazing provision and healing in this woman's darkest hour