This is the 1st of 2 readers’ reviews for this novel by multi-award-winning author Priscilla B Shuler.
Table of Contents
When a beloved waitress is attacked in a small community in South Carolina, Sheriff Boyd Custer will have to resort to some unusual allies, unorthodox techniques, and, hardest of all, he will have to face his own past and reconsider his loyalties to bring justice and restore peace in his community. He’s also keeping a big secret down his sleeve while looking for the murderer. Can love still be love if it’s tainted by harm? Is total redemption possible? What does it mean to be favored by God? Sheriff Boyd and his posse will find that there’s always something to look forward to, even in the most desperate of circumstances. “Favored” by Priscilla B. Shuler is a small-town mystery focused not only on the whodunit but on the aftermath of a crime and the repercussions it can have, not only for the victim but for all involved.
On the one hand, as in other of her works, Ms. Shuler excels at creating realistic dialogues that fit perfectly with the time and place of the narrative. I also enjoyed immensely the small “Easter eggs” that she leaves as winks for his readers from previous books. This is a well-thought-out novel, with excellent pacing that keeps the readers’ attention without overwhelming them with action, a congruent plot, and unique characters. I especially enjoyed LeeRoy as a character, a Vietnam veteran with heightened senses and an even bigger sense of loyalty. I think Ms. Shuler could devote an entire book to this character alone.
On the downside, the main character, Colleen, is the epitome of kindness and so good that she may tend to be not only unbelievable but also unrelatable for most of us, flawed humans. Another one that may be controversial is condoning abuse in relationships as long as there’s “love.” I can’t say much as not to reveal spoilers. While I understand and respect the religious undertone of the novel and even the idea of forgiveness and redemption, I think it may have been taken too far. While I’m sure the author’s heart was in the right place, this episode may end up sending a message that could be incredibly harmful to people struggling to acknowledge and get out of abusive situations, which is hard enough on its own. The manuscript also needs editing.
Nonetheless, this is a splendid book for people who enjoy simple, small-town mysteries, quirky characters, and heart-warming endings. I would not recommend this book for readers looking for an intricate mystery full of twists and turns, or for atheists or other readers who dislike religious content, particularly Christian dogma. People who are struggling or have struggled with abuse should proceed with caution. Survivors of rape or people battling alcoholism should also note that these topics are covered in the book, though never in an overly explicit or distasteful way.
- Title: Favored
- Author: Priscilla B Shuler
- Genre: Christian Historical Fiction
- Publication Date: 12 August 2018
- ISBN or ASIN: B07GDD9B7R
Themes (Note: 0=none, 1=a few, 2=considerable, 3=pronounced, 4=excessive)
- Sexual: TBDL
- Religious: TBDL
- Violence, self-harm, etc.: TBDL
- Crude language, expletives, swearing, etc.: TBDL
- Other adult tones: TBDL
- Content: 4 stars
- Writing Style: 4 stars
- Appeal to Target Audience: 4 stars
- Uniqueness: 4 stars
- Editing: 4 stars
- Other factors: 3 stars
- Overall: 4 out of 5 stars
Note: The views expressed in book reviews are the review authors’ own and do not necessarily reflect the entire site’s.
Know more about Priscilla B Shuler via https://thechrysalisbrewproject.com/2021/11/16/meet-our-author-priscilla-b-shuler/.
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