California's gold country, 1850. A time when men sold their souls for a bag of gold and women sold their bodies for a place to sleep.Essentially, this book is a powerful retelling of the prophetic book of Hosea (from the Bible). I was captivated for all 464 pages and finished the book within 1 day. The story of Angel, while not necessarily applicable to our physical lives, can definitely be applied to our spiritual lives. I found myself fascinated by her life story and excited about the change that overcame her as she started falling in love with Michael, her husband.
Angel expects nothing from men but betrayal. Sold into prostitution as a child, she survives by keeping her hatred alive. And what she hates most are the men who use her, leaving her empty and dead inside.
Then she meets Michael Hosea. A man who seeks his Father's heart in everything, Michael obeys God's call to marry Angel and to love her unconditionally. Sowly, day by day, he defies Angel's every bitter expectation, until despite her resistance, her frozen heart begins to thaw.
But with her unexpected softening come overwhelming feelings of unworthiness and fear. And so Angel runs. Back to the darkness, away from her husband's pursuing love, terrified of the truth she can no longer deny: Her final healing must come from the One who loves her even more than Michael does...the One who will never let her go.
Many times I found myself thinking of my relationship with Jesus. How many times have I run away from Him like Angel ran away from Michael and Gomer ran away from Hosea? Too many times, I'm afraid. My spirit has been given up in adultery to other gods, sometimes I don't even know this, but it happens to everyone. Aren't we blessed to have such a forgiving, loving God?
I would definitely give this book 5 out of 5 stars. It was wonderful. There were some sketchy scenes, but I found that Francine never went into details about intimate relationships. She focused on the relationship building rather than the "mushy stuff" that most girls want to read about (and by the way, that's not good for you if you do read the "mushy stuff" :P ).
The only part I thought wasn't done neatly (concerning the writing of the book) was how Michael fell in love with Angel. It's just too "good" to be true :P Unfortunately that's usually the way it is when it comes to romance novels. My thoughts, though, were that Francine could have expanded a bit on their relationship prior to their hilarious marriage (depending on the way you look at it; I thought it was hilarious).
I enjoyed the book so much I decided to look at the Bible and flip through Hosea. Although Redeeming Love didn't follow the story line of Hosea to a T, it did cover the highlights of relationship Gomer and Hosea had. The difference? Angel's life is changed for the good; she doesn't stay the same like Gomer did.
So what is my suggestion to you? If you're a girl and over the age of 13 I think you'd love this book (that is, if you're into romance novels lol). I ensure you it's a fascinating read and definitely will get you thinking about your relationship with Jesus!
Signed with reds and pinks,