Four Star Book Review- Forward to What Lies Ahead
By: Chloe Flanagan
Sometimes being strong isn’t enough.
Ever since she was a teenager, Regina Whitman has relied on her tough, independent spirit to survive and to protect the ones she loves. Even when heartache and disappointment strike, she finds the strength to press forward, rebuild her life, and do meaningful work.
But just when her outlook seems brightest, a tragic and shameful secret from the past catches up with her, jeopardizing her future and threatening the lives of the people around her.
In the face of overwhelming danger and darkness, can Regina learn to trust God and embrace the love she doesn’t think she deserves? Or will the painful guilt of her past destroy her?
Regina Whitman and her sister have overcome the unthinkable- abuse by their stepfather.
They’ve triumphed over a horrific past, but that past is about to catch up with them, and the life they’ve built takes an ugly turn for the worst.
Regina had no intention of seeking the romantic ” meant to be’s ” that Abby embraced so enthusiastically. But she did her best to keep her own hang-ups from infecting Abby’s dreams. So, in keeping with that resolution, Regina decided to suspend her misgivings for the time being and let Abby savor her exuberance.
Regina has relied on her own strength and fought her own battles, even if the consequences were detrimental to herself. She’s done everything in her power to protect her younger sister, but the arm of evil threatens the lives of everyone she loves.
“It wasn’t any kind of corrosion, ma’am, it looks like the lines were broken deliberately.” She slammed the refrigerator door. “What?! You mean like they were vandalized? Are you sure?” “Yes ma’am…”
She can’t do it on her own anymore. But there is One who is willing to bear her burdens, forgive her past, and fight her battles for her if she will only recognize His Love and His Grace.
If grace was really forgiveness and freedom, then it was precious: much too precious to be bought with her efforts. It could only be a gift. Did it really only require her to reach out and accept it?
I’m giving this debut novel by Chloe S. Flanagan four stars. I read the whole things from start to finish last night. It’s not a very long book, it took me just over 2 hours to read it. It’s not a light-hearted or entertaining read, it’s a redemption story. A story of a woman struggling to overcome the nightmare of her youth and finding freedom and forgiveness in the ever-present Grace of God. The book opens with more telling than showing and jumps rapidly through several months to a year later. However, after you get through the first couple chapters, the book centers on a shorter time-period and increases in intensity as the author entrenches the reader in Regina’s struggle. As with every new author, (myself included), there are always things to learn and improve, but overall, a good debut novel.
“I realized that life was going to move forward whether I participated or not. If I was going to keep living at all, I knew that I would have to move forward too.”
Chloe S. Flanagan is an author, technical writer, blogger, and graduate of New York University. She enjoys exploring the Christian walk frankly and thoughtfully in her fiction and in her blog, The Candid Corinthian. When she’s not writing, Chloe loves music, travel, reading books in all genres, and spending time with family.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher. All thoughts and opinions are my own, a positive review was not required.
A positive review does not guarantee that I endorse or recommend all publications by the authors/ and or publishers.