Cydney Sanders thought she knew God's plan for her life. She'd marry, have kids, and then snap her body back into shape by doing Tae Bo. But she's celebrating her fortieth birthday as the maid of honor at her little sister's wedding...and still single. Now her life is suddenly complicated by the best man. He's the opposite of what she wants in a husband...and yet, he keeps defying her expectations. Starting with a lavender rose--symbolizing enchantment--each rose he sends her reflects his growing love for her.
Cydney's best friend Dana appears to have the perfect marriage--until she discovers her husband's affair and her world goes into a tailspin. Then there is Phyllis--who is out of hope and out of prayers after asking God for six long years to help her husband find faith. When she runs into an old friend who is the Christian man she longs for, she's faced with an overwhelming choice.
Life-long friends with life-altering struggles. Will they trust God's faithfulness...and find strength to be faithful to Him?
In Christian fiction, the ratio of POC (Person of Color) characters to Caucasian colors is painfully skewed. Therefore almost anytime that I do see a book that focuses extensively on POC characters and is written well, I usually am on it like a hot potato. It doesn't matter to me if the characters are the main focus or if they are part of an ensemble cast. Their culture or lifestyle doesn't even need to be described. All I want is for Christian fiction to accept and realize that there are a lot of POC readers who would love to read more about POC characters in CBA/ECPA fiction.
I haven't read any of Kim Cash Tate's books before but after this one I'm definitely going to have to. Her style of writing is fun to read yet packs a lot of questions to think about after you are done with the book. As the title states, this book is all about the concept of what being faithful really is about. Through three different stories that are connected, the reader discovers the concept of faithfulness in relationships. All three feature women in different stages of relationships and how they maintain a sense of being faithful in each one.
While Cyd's story involving the beginning of a relationship is interesting, the one that caught my attention the most is Phyllis' relationship. Her husband is a non Christian and refuses to share anything with her faith. He tries to discourage her from going to church and raising their children in the same way. Because of this, Phyllis felt like she couldn't really have a true relationship with him. Therefore she finds what she wants in another man. Her scenario brings the question of can a man and woman really be friends without any sexual tension. According this book, it appears to be no but it's a good discussion topic.
The only part of the book I didn't like was Dana's ultimate decision with her husband. This includes a spoiler but I was not very happy with her decision. I felt that she was WAY too easy on him for cheating on her. I could understand if they had counseling for awhile before getting back together but it just happened so fast! And this was AFTER she had reason to suspect him for a second time! Even if I loved my husband that much, I don't know if I could trust him again after that. At the very least I would demand counseling before letting him back into my life completely the way Dana did. This does not mean that my faith in God is any less however. I also wished that something had been done with the woman Scott cheated with. She goes to the same church but apparently does not care at all that everyone knows about what she did. She's very haughty, not sorry and appears to just walk away with nothing on her conscience.
I did find it interesting that as one of the few multicultural fiction books published by Thomas Nelson this is one of the few women's fiction books that did not have any faces on the cover. I don't know what the reason is but I wonder if it was to not alienate any of the readers because it is a POC read. Just an interesting observation. Other than this I really enjoyed this book. As I said the writing is crisp and engaging. I really felt as if I could relate to the characters and I was genuinely interested in them. All in all a great read.
Faithful by Kim Cash Tate is published by Thomas Nelson (2010)
This review copy was provided by the publisher
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