SHORT REVIEW:This was a fantastic book, but a word of caution: this book is not for teenagers, for anyone who struggles with lust, or for anyone who does not wish to be exposed to some very mature sexual concepts. While the book is not graphic, it is mature. Exercise discernment.
LONGER REVIEW:The book has been heralded as wonderful - as it is - but it contains some very mature subject matter, mostly sexual.
I would not recommend this book for a teenager, for someone who is unmarried, or who wouldn't wish to be exposed to mature sexual concepts. Like the actual book of Hosea, it does deal with prostitution - but becomes more descriptive. It deals with marriage - including the intimate aspects. And there is more than one instance of rape, pedophilia, etc. Evil and wickedness is not at all celebrated, and I wouldn't even say that it is gratuitous, but it isn't "glossed over" either.
This is a book that should be approached with discernment - and a thorough biblical understanding. It is not at all a replacement for the healing counsel of the Holy Spirit. There is also a risk of idolizing the main male protagonist, and feeling disappointed with "real men," just as many romance novels tend to create expectations near-perfection in our minds.
Again, this book is wonderful. The allegory for Christ's role as our kinsman-redeemer, as our faithful lover, is beautiful. The characters' thought processes are real, and familiar. But it should be approached with wisdom, and again, biblical understanding.
This is one of the most amazing books I have ever read (and I usually hate Christian fiction). It is a retelling of the Hosea story in the Bible--but set during the Gold Rush. Sounds weird, I know. I was reluctant to buy the premise as well. However, it just works and I cried my way through the book. Fantastic. Highly recommended.
In this splendid retelling of the biblical story of Hosea, bestselling author Francine Rivers pens a heartbreaking romance between a prostitute and the upright and kind farmer who marries her; the story also functions as a reminder of God's unconditional love for his people. Redeeming Love opens with the Gold Rush of 1850 and its rough-and-tumble atmosphere of greed and desire. Angel, who was sold into prostitution as a child, has learned to distrust all men, who see her only as a way to satisfy their lust. When the virtuous and spiritual-minded Michael Hosea is told by God to marry this "soiled dove," he obeys, despite his misgivings. As Angel learns to love him, she begins to hope again but is soon overwhelmed by fear and returns to her old life. Rivers shines in her ability to weave together spiritual themes and sexual tension in a well-told story, a talent that has propelled her into the spotlight as one of the most popular novelists in the genre of Christian fiction. This is one of her best.
Fantastic book! A story of a woman who believes herself unworthy of love due to her terrible childhood experiences. The first chapter grabs the reader's attention but is difficult emotionally to read. The book continues to get better as the story progresses! The writing is great,the characters and setting are realistically written, and the story line keeps the reader involved right up to the end.
Christian fiction at it's best! Francine Rivers paints a real picture of our broken world as well as the brokeness in ourselves in her retelling of the book of Hosea. Yet through that brokeness God is always at work for "his beloveds." It has inspired me to pick up my bible and read the book of Hosea for myself. I will definitely be reading more by this author.
A Story of Love That Won't Let Go - No Matter What!
Californias gold country, 1850. A time when men sold their souls for a bag of gold and women sold their bodies for a place to sleep.
Angel expects nothing from men but betrayal. Sold into prostitution as a child, she survives by keeping her hatred alive. And what she hates most are the men who use her, leaving her empty and dead inside.
Then she meets Michael Hosea, a man who seeks his Fathers heart in everything. Michael obeys Gods call to marry Angel and to love her unconditionally. Slowly, day by day, he defies Angels every bitter expectation, until despite her resistance, her frozen heart begins to thaw.
Love, Love, Love this book!!!
Did I say I Loved this book?! I would give it 10 stars but they only offer 5.
I give this book (the revised edition) to all the girls I know that are graduating. I have also passed this on to my two daughter in laws since coming in the family. One has read it 5 times and the other has told me she cried (I'm sure they both did). My own daughter received a copy last year, 2012, for her very own.
This is my ALL-TIME favorite book EVER. I am not a fan of fiction books but i could NOT put this book down BOTH times I read it (i just started reading a third time). WOW. As I read this book I saw within the lead character sooo many girls and women that I know. So many women who have been sexually abused and thought that they have no value. So many girls who believe that they are "dead" inside and don't deserve to be happy. So many girls who have been abused and now see sex as a way to control or have power over men. I cried for this girl in the story who represents SO many women that i know. It reminded me to give GRACE towards women who prostitute themselves whether they are not out right being paid or not - women use sex to get things they want - attention, money, nice things. These women - what has happened in their lives to get them to that point? What has happened to them to make them so numb to this? This book tells the story of one girl and the man who set out to love her regardless of her past. Its the story of the book of Hosea in the Bible but told during the gold rush era. God tells this man that she - this prostitute - is to be his wife. This man has saved himself for his wife only to find out the woman he has been saving himself for has been with hundreds of men. But he loves HER anyway. Not her body... HER. He seeks after her, he redeems her from that life, and he seeks out to love her unconditionally. Just as Christ continually seeks after us no matter how many times we walk away. Every woman was once that little girl who was hurt and abused... but every woman is a child of the king and deserves to be treated as such.
This is an awesome book. What an amazing picture of God's redeeming love for us. It deals with tough subject matter- the girl is a prostitute that was sold into sex slavery as a child, set in the gold rush era in California, but based on the biblical story of Hosea. Definately not a read for a young person but it is a story that will touch your heart deeply. I shed many tears reading this story.
GREAT book. It's my first Francine Rivers book, but I will be reading more!!
California's gold country,1850.Atime when men sold their souls for a bag of gold and women sold their bodies for a place to sleep.Angel expects nothing from men but betrayal.Sold into prostitution as a child,she survives by keeping her hatred alive.And what she hates most are the men who use her,leaving her empty and dead inside.
One of my absolute favorite books! The story of a prostitute who is obeys, marries and loves this woman no matter what! A great allegory of Christ's love for us when we were sinners! I NEVER thought I'd part with this book..but its story must be shared!
"A powerful retelling of the book of Hosea. Redeeming Love is a life changing story of God's unconditional, redemptive, all consuming love."
This is a lovely retelling of a biblical tale; good historical fiction. It has a definite Christian message but not overbearingly so. While the outcome is predictable, the telling of the story is genuinely and clearly written. An enjoyable read.
If you haven't read it yet.....What are you waiting for? The author did a wonderful job in making an old story new and relevant. If you're not familiar with Hosea then I suggest you sit and read that book first. I highly recommend this book and I hope all of you who read them enjoy them as much as I did. "Redeeming Love" is a story of restoration and forgiveness -- the kind that has to take place not only on a spiritual level, but also on an intrapersonal level and within one's self. It's also a lesson on judgment.
Note that this edition is what the editor refers to as the redeemed edition, and much of the sex has been removed. So do not be turned off by reviews that refer to this book as pure smut.
I rarely give a book 5 stars, but this one held my interest so much and I love it so much it gets all 5. This Christian fiction novel is meant to parallel (in many ways) the book of Hosea in the Bible. It's a story about a man who marries a prostitute and remains faithful (in spite of incredible odds) to helping her heal from the damaging things that have been done to her - from childhood on. The twists and turns it takes never cease to astound. It's heartbreaking, insightful, and inspiring. This story is a beautiful analogy of all that we're told in scripture about God's capacity for forgiveness and His desire to redeem the broken and lost. I highly recommend this book. My only caveat is that it may feel a little too obvious to some readers in its Christian message - and that is likely to come across as preachy to some. While that kind of book normally turns me off and costs a star in my rating, this one gets a star for tackling a tremendously tough subject - not because others haven't tackled it, but because it is honest, brutal, and yet treats its characters with dignity. Christians are seen as the falable people they are, and yet they are also the instruments that bring healing to a broken woman who is incapable of saving herself from her past (incapable because of what has been done to her from a very young age). I suspect if you can read the "Christian-speak" in the context of real people living out their faith (as opposed to thinking it is preaching at you), the story will very possibly mesmerize you as I did me.
I didn't realize that Rivers published a cleaned up version of this story. In reading other reviews I'm pretty sure this one is not the "redeemed" or cleaned-up version. While I wouldn't recommend this version to a teen (necessarily) I whole-heartedly recommend this version to a mature reader. It is the tough subject matter and exposure of dark and damaging things that makes this story what it is - a book about redemption.