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(Review) Miracle in a Dry Season, Appalachian Blessing Book One by Sarah Loudin Thomas

Publisher: Bethany House, July 29, 2014.
Genre: Fiction, Southern Story, 1950s.
Format: Paperback.
Pages: 305.
Rating: 3 Stars for good.
Source: Free copy from Bethany House and An Open Book in exchange for a review.

Book is available @

Casewell Phillips, 35, is a single man. He lives in the rural area of Wise, West Virginia. His parents live nearby. Casewell builds furniture, he also built his home.
Perla Long, 24, is a single mother of Delilah. She moved to Wise from another town in West Virginia, in order to escape her reputation and begin a new life. She and Delilah are living with an aunt and uncle. Perla is an exceptional cook and baker.
The people of Wise love Perla's skills in the kitchen, but gossip fills their minds more than their stomachs. There are a few people of Wise who see past Perla's past, and see their present need for her help.

My Thoughts:
Miracle in a Dry Season is a well-used story with simple characters.
It has elements that I've heard all too often. People who do not see their own sins; however, they pick and pluck another for their sin. Gossip is often information that is incorrect. It is speculation. I feel Miracle in a Dry Season gave a solid story with teachable subject matter.
The strength of Miracle in a Dry Season is its themes.
The weakness of Miracle in a Dry Season is the characters. I felt the characters needed to be developed stronger. I saw just the surface of their abilities.
I'm going to step out on a limb. Christian fiction is (not always) too clean. I'm not referring to morality, but reality. Life is sometimes ugly, raw, rough, gruff, and mean. There is nothing wrong with presenting Christian characters who are these traits. The more real a character, the more impact the book will have on the reader, because the reader can identify with the character. The character will have a vivid dimension and definition. When I think about the apostle Peter, in the beginning he was a rough and gruff man. In Scripture I see him at his worst and at his best. I am aware of readers who do not want to see these developments in a Christian fiction character, and for them I am glad there are books like Miracle in a Dry Season.