This is the first book that I've read by Julie Lessman - in fact I was very excited to have won it in a contest!
This is book is full of drama. To be honest, almost more drama than I wanted to deal with. I couldn't stop reading it though, because it's kind of like your own family_even when there's drama that you don't want to deal with, you're invested in making sure it works out okay in the end.
Julie created characters that are so real that you feel as if they are your family or at least, close friends. That fosters a genuine care for each of them, their situations and decisions - even when they are making hurtful decisions. You hurt when they hurt, you laugh when they laugh, you love the people they love, even if sometimes you don't want to.
Probably my favorite thing about this book is the very natural way that God is a part of their lives. From the beginning you have a cast of characters that is very diverse in their beliefs. From everyday Christians to Sunday Christians to those who want nothing to do with God and live lives fully on their own terms. In that, Julie writes in a way that makes God in our everyday lives so natural. It's a working example of how we can practically have Him in our everyday lives. She shows the very real necessity of knowing God's Word and how it truly is a source of help and comfort in our lowest points as well as a beacon of guidance always. She also shows how vital it is to have a Godly mentor, someone that we share our hurts, beliefs, doubts, sins and love with. And I love the way she shows the importance of family, even when it's less than perfect (aren't they all?) and full of hurt - even so, God puts us together to support one another and see each other through.
So, parts I struggled with:
- The drama - it was almost soap opera like and more than I truly wanted to deal with. With that said, life is messy and full of drama and this book shows how God is in the midst guiding us through.
- The focus on the physical in this book was difficult for me. One reason I read Christian fiction is to not deal with this aspect. Never did I feel that she stepped over any bounds in explanation or anything, she is very adept at letting you know where it was headed without the details. Again however, life is messy. We are not perfect. God gives boundaries to live with in - which is a main point of contention in this book - and when we're not walking closely with God (and even when we are, if not being accountable) we can find ourselves in these very real situations. As much as I didn't like it, it's a reality in our world and needed to be addressed.
Parts that I love:
- The well-developed characters that you just can't help loving, even though sometimes you don't want to deal with them. I'm so grateful that God sees the potential and doesn't give up on us as in my humanness I am more apt to do.
- The variety of settings, from Boston to Ireland to the
- The positive portrayal of a Christian marriage and what it looks like. God honoring marriages are not the norm these days, so it is very nice to see an example to emulate.
- The aspect of forgiveness, shown in various ways throughout the book. I love the way Julie went straight to the scriptures to help one of the characters see the need for this and exactly how to do so when she thought it impossible.
- The everyday aspect of living with Jesus - not just the knowledge of Jesus, but how knowing His Holy Scripture can make such a difference in how we perceive and react to things. Although never mentioned or suggested, it leads one to want to memorize Scripture, have it hidden in one's heart so that it can make a difference in our lives the way it did for the characters in this book.
- The believability of it. Life is messy, but some of the issues in this book could have felt forced or not real. As much as I didn't like the sin and the outcomes, Julie told this very twisted tale in a very plausible way. And the grace and faith she wove into it was just as convincing.
In summation, obviously there were more parts of the book that I loved than parts that I struggled with. This book touched a chord with me. At one point the heart-wrenching pain I witnessed caused me to leave the book and spend time worshiping God. At another point I was so thankful that of all the ways my sister and I have struggled, we didn't have to deal with what these sisters were dealing with, that I stopped reading to let my sister know. As I finished the book, even though it was 3:30am in the morning, I couldn't help myself, I had to write down my feelings about it. This book may deal with things that my heart doesn't want to see, but this book literally drew me into the arms of Jesus for comfort and guided me in ways and reasons to incorporate my love for Him even more into my everyday life. I highly recommend this book. I don't believe you can read it without being touched by God. I so look forward to what God has in store for me when I read the next two books in this series, A Passion Redeemed and A Passion Denied.
The first book of Daughters of Boston series is a convicting novel about a woman who chooses to lay down her desires for a man who'd rather have her than her God. In her trials, she blossoms into a woman of faith and prayer and sees God meet her needs.
A quick word of warning, if this is your first book by Julie Lessman, then you'd better be prepared to lose some sleep, shed some tears, scream and laugh and get frustrated at the people that become like a real family. The O'Connor family draws you in to their home and soon you won't ever want to leave. Sure there's heartbreak, hardships and trials, but all in all, they're people so full of life and love that their journey will become your journey and their tears your own as well.
All the characters in this book are weaved together beautifully and Julie writes with such passion that you can't put the book down. Faith goes through a lot, and you can't help but cheer for her throughout the book as she gets battered by the storms of life, and yet she stays strong.
This is not a story to be missed and I highly recommend these books to all lovers of Christian romance, although I wouldn't encourage young teens as Julie is a master of passion and desire.
This is an absolutely incredible book! I seriously couldn't believe how passionate, fun, and heart wrenching this book was! Once I got into it I couldn't stop reading until I was finished!!!! I loved that it is bigger than most books so it makes you feel as though you really get to know the characters. If you love romantic, historical fiction than you'll love this book!
In the first book of the Daughters of Boston series, Julie Lessman opens the story with a dramatic 'BANG'! And she keeps the reader on the edge of their seat with emotions that rival the ride of a roller coaster. I loved A Passion Most Pure because Julie shows the inner struggles that we as human beings go through at some point in our lives, including those of us who love God and want to please Him. She delights in taking her characters and putting them in situations that make them do some serious thinking, ultimately bringing them before the throne of Grace. And then she throws in a heaping of romance just for good measure.
The book is set in 1916 Boston during WW1. This is the story of Faith O'Conner, the oldest daughter in the O'Conner family. Faith loves God with all of her heart, but she also loves Collin McGuire, the cocky rogue who stood up for her when she was a little girl. The problem is, her father has forbidden her to have anything to do with him. Not to mention, she knows that he is secretly seeing her sister. But when things change, and Collin's interests are suddenly directed her way, will she be able to withstand the longing that she feels in her heart for Collin, or will she decide to follow God's leading? Or can she have both?