Book Review: The Reason by William Sirls

The Reason, a debut novel, by William Sirls made me smile. . .and it made me weep in my Kleenex. I requested this book because I am wrestling with some questions about my own faith right now. I have faced several challenges these past few years and many times of waiting. . .I was interested in seeing how Sirls' characters addressed those issues and what they had to teach me, if anything.

This first novel by Sirls is a fascinating tale of some strange happenings in a small Michigan town. James Lindy is the blind pastor of St. Thomas Church. In the opening pages of the story, a storm rolls in to the area and lightning strikes the large wooden cross at the church. . .living it splintered in two. To the local people who look at the cross, it looks like it is beyond repair. . .until a young carpenter named Kenneth comes along. Kenneth does what seems impossible and the locals see how "all things are possible." Along with the pastor, we meet Alex and his single mom, Brooke, who face Alex's agressive leukeumia and are challenged to "only believe." We also meet Macey Lewis, is an oncologist, drawn to Alex but is also challenged to "only believe". Then there is Brooke's friend, Carla, who faces down demons from her past. . .Each of the town's characters in the book face life challenges that many of today's readers can probably relate to and understand.

I had to keep a Kleenex handy as I read this one. . .The characters were well-developed and seemed to be realistic. The Reason was a good read but it was also a read that I used to challenge myself. . .It wasn't mindless drivel that I take to the beach to read and relax with. The Reading Group guide at the end of the book offers questions to use in a group but also are great to ask yourself after you've read the book. In fact, I am still chewing on a few of them as I reflect on The Reason.  I encourage you to read Sirls' novel and "only believe."

I received this book from Thomas Nelson through their Booksneeze program. I was not required to write a positive review.


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