Book Review Archives
Author: David Story
Publisher: Xulon Press
Book Size: 356 pages
Reviewer: Deborah Porter
Barnes & Noble
Virginia "Jenny" Young was a prayer warrior, encourager, and pillar of the First Baptist Church of Littleland, Texas. Everyone knew Jenny's death would leave a big hole in the life of the congregation, but no one could have anticipated what was about to start as she took her last breath that Sunday night.
No one was ready for the Whispers to begin. Certainly not Associate Pastor Jim Mitchell, who was struggling in his walk with the Lord and slipping from intimacy into routine. However, on Monday morning, as Jim began his day at the church office, God turned his routine upside down, and his week was about to become anything but ordinary. On that Monday, Jim, and a handful of others, heard the quiet, audible voice of God, and nothing would ever be the same.
Jim and his wife, Cindy, together with church custodian, Darren Williams, all heard God's whisper that morning. For Jim and Cindy, the message was "Feed My sheep." For Darren, it was "Protect My sheep."
Something was brewing in and around the Littleland First Baptist Church, and somehow it was connected to five people: Jenny Young; a mysterious stranger named Max; and three teenagers--Sally Montgomery, lonely Alicia Thomas, and high school drop-out Rusty Jenkins.
As the week rushes toward the church's annual Fall Festival outreach event--an alternative to Halloween--revelations begin to unfold which connect lives in dramatic and often frightening ways. At the same time, God's truth is shared with new passion and confidence, changing individuals and families forever. The battle between good and evil for the hearts and minds of mankind is the underlying thread throughout this story.
Whispers is an engrossing book from the start. Covering just one week in the life of the people of the First Baptist Church, the author manages to maintain a fast paced storyline from the first page through to the exciting climax. This is largely due to the story moving from character to character as it progresses. This novel would best be described as an ensemble piece, with each character playing a vital part in the overall plot, and the shifting from each point of view is done very smoothly, adding to the fullness of the storyline.
Although some readers may find their boundaries of credibility stretched a little too far by the climax of this novel, it is not a displeasing ending. The message of God's power, redeeming love and grace floods through, together with a reminder to each reader of the plans and purposes He has for all of us. As Max, the mysterious but very amiable stranger, puts it: "God works in ways that are beyond us. He has a plan for us all, and sometimes that includes a glimpse of his miraculous power. His wonders to perform….And sometimes it's in the everyday ordinary miracles that he does his work…Our job is simply to trust and obey."
Throughout the novel the reader is constantly aware that everything is being set in place for a major showdown at the Fall Festival. Once the climax of that night subsides, the author takes time to place the last of the pieces into the puzzle, bringing the story back to Virginia "Jenny" Young and the part her prayers had played in releasing God's power in Littleland that very eventful week.
Most pleasing of all, Whispers concludes with the door wide open for a sequel involving Max, the mysterious "stranger"--a sequel that should be well worth waiting for.