Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Book Review - Sinner's Garden


In the small Lake Erie township of Benning, someone is at work cultivating a supernatural garden . . .

Andy Kemp's young life has been as ravaged as his scarred face. Disfigured by an abusive father, the teenager hides behind his books and an impenetrable wall of cynicism and anger.

As Andy's mother struggles to reconnect with him, his Uncle Rip returns transformed from a stint in prison and wants to be a mentor to the reclusive boy, doing everything he can to help end Andy's pain. When Andy begins hearing strange music through his iPod and making near-prophetic announcements, Rip is convinced that what Andy is hearing is the voice of God.

Elsewhere, police officer Heather Gerisch responds to a late-night breaking and entering in one of the poorest homes in town. She soon realizes that the masked prowler has left thousands of dollars in gift cards from a local grocery store.
As the bizarre break-ins continue and Heather pursues the elusive "Summer Santa," Andy and Rip discover an enormous and well-kept garden of wildflowers that seems to have grown overnight at an abandoned steel mill.

Soon, they realize who the gardener is, and a spree of miracles transfigures this small town from a place of hopelessness into a place of healing and beauty.


Over the course of his life, William Sirls has experienced both great highs and tremendous lows---some born of chance, some born of choice. Life lessons involving faith, grace, and forgiveness are evident in his writing. The Sinners' Garden is his second novel. His first novel, The Reason, was published in 2012. William makes his home in southern Michigan.

Learn more about William at: http://WilliamSirls.com


This was a book that was unlike any I've read for a long time. The author is very detailed in his writing (if this annoys you, take this into consideration) and you really feel as though you are with the characters because of all this detail. However, I did feel the story went on just a tad bit too long.

Andy was scarred at a young age by his father who was throwing hot water at his mother and the water hit Andy in the face, which leaves him with an outer scar and an inner scar. This affects his life in so many ways. I think we can all relate to having someone do something to us that we end up having to live with forever. It's how we deal with it that matters, and that's a huge part of this story.

Andy's Mom, Judi, also bears guilt because she knows that she was the intended victim of the boiling water, but because she allowed Andy to sleep on the couch until his father came home, he was scarred. She blames herself when it really isn't her fault at all.

This book is really about finding out how much God loves us, how He can redeem us, and it's about His grace. There are lots of twists and turns in this story along with several mysteries. It does make the book a page turner, however, as I said, the book goes on a bit too long and there were times I had a hard time continuing with the story.  For this reason, I am going to give this book 4 out of 5 stars. It has a wonderful theme, but it just took too long to get to the point!

*This book was provided to me for my honest review by LitFuse Publicity Group

You can read more reviews of this book HERE

Blessings - Julie

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