Happy release day! May 8th is another busy day for publishers and authors (as well as book reviewers!)
Thanks to Smith Publicity for the advanced copy in exchange for my honest review.
SEND DOWN THE RAIN – Charles Martin
Allie is still recovering from the loss of her family’s beloved waterfront restaurant on Florida’s Gulf Coast when she loses her second husband to a terrifying highway accident. Devastated and losing hope, she shudders to contemplate the future—until a cherished person from her past returns.
Joseph has been adrift for many years, wounded in both body and spirit and unable to come to terms with the trauma of his Vietnam War experiences. Just as he resolves to abandon his search for peace and live alone at a remote cabin in the Carolina mountains, he discovers a mother and her two small children lost in the forest. A man of character and strength, he instinctively steps in to help them get back to their home in Florida. There he will return to his own hometown—and witness the accident that launches a bittersweet reunion with his childhood sweetheart, Allie.
When Joseph offers to help Allie rebuild her restaurant, it seems the flame may reignite—until a 45-year-old secret from the past begins to emerge, threatening to destroy all hope for their second chance at love.
In Send Down the Rain, Charles Martin proves himself to be a storyteller of great wisdom and compassion who bears witness to the dreams we cherish, the struggles we face, and the courage we must summon when life seems to threaten what we hold most dear.
My Thoughts: 4/5 stars
I seem to be on a roll with putting some contemporary fiction in between my long list of thrillers! SEND DOWN THE RAIN by Charles Martin is beautifully written and does a great job intertwining the lives and stories of the characters. I know for some, it may deter you from picking this one up seeing that some have categorized it as Christian Fiction. I can assure you, that I didn’t get too much of that vibe while reading (I’m not a huge fan of the more religious genres).
For almost half a century, Joseph has been harboring a secret. A Vietnam Veteran, he is worried this secret will tear him apart and even separate him from those he loves. Joseph has isolated himself from the world, he lives in a hidden cabin in the woods and enjoys his life of solitude. Circumstances bring Allie, his childhood sweetheart, and him back together and there’s hope for a second chance at love.
This isn’t just a love story, or a story about overcoming your past and the secrets buried there. I wouldn’t categorize this as historical fiction, because the history of the Vietnam War doesn’t come into play in this novel. This is a character study and a look into the life of a man suffering from PTSD as he tries to navigate through life after the war. Martin shows us that no matter how hard life can be, no matter how many curveballs are thrown at you, the human spirit is strong and there is always still hope. I definitely will revisit some of Martin’s past books!
About the Author:
Charles Martin is an author of thirteen novels, including the New York Times bestsellers Where the River Ends and The Mountain Between Us (adapted into and released in October 2017 as a 20th Century Fox major motion picture starring Kate Winslet and Idris Elba). Martin’s books have been published in over twenty-five countries and in twenty languages. He earned his B.A. in English from Florida State University and went on to receive an M.A. in Journalism and a Ph.D. in Communication from Regent University.
With themes revolving around love and hope, Martin has been championed as an author “who understands the power of story and uses it to alter the souls and lives of both his characters and his readers.” He and his wife, Christy, live a stone’s throw from the St. John’s River in Jacksonville, Florida, with their three boys: Charlie, John T. and Rives.
Have you read any of Charles Martin’s other books? Which do you recommend?