Monday, May 5, 2008

Book Reviews

As the debut author of teen fiction, I look forward to book reviews. It’s always nice to find out what other people think of my writing, and how they feel about the characters I created. A couple reviews even motivated me to work on the next novel more than I had been before I read them. To Rosalind of RAWSISTZ Reviewers and Cheryl of APOOO Book Club I say, “Thanks so very much for the very positive feedback! Your support is greatly appreciated.”
I realize that a book review is the opinion of the reviewer, but there is one review I'd like to respond to. This particular reviewer of Choices seemed skeptical of the fact that a teenager would quote the Bible, chapter and verse.
When I attended church as a teenager, not every single service, but most of the time the preacher spoke loud and fast in a sing-song voice, and people in the congregation expressed ‘Amen’s’ and ‘Hallelujahs’ at certain points when I didn’t have a clue what it was they were agreeing with. What exactly was it the preacher said that resonated with them was a mystery to me, because I barely understood any of his words. No disrespect intended, but I must honestly describe a lot of sermons I heard back in the day as loud, emotional talk with no real message.
To be able to become more like Christ, which is what God wants for every born again Christian, I need a message I can understand. I don’t need to be spoken to loudly in a chastising tone, I need to be taught. And don’t just read a passage from the Bible and then move on. Interpret it. Explain it to me, so that I can understand its meaning. I need to know the truth according to God. I need to be Bible taught.
Not every teen in Choices knows what the Bible says about the situation being faced at the time, but the characters who do quote scripture on occasion are Bible taught. I didn’t get into all of this in the story, but: They don’t just read their Bibles; they study their Bibles and meditate on the verses. And they receive lessons from educated, spiritual teachers of the Word in Sunday school.
With fiction the story is made up, but in order to be an interesting, entertaining read, certain aspects must ring true, and the characters definitely must be believable. So, are there teenagers outside of the world of fiction who can quote the Bible, chapter and verse? Of course there are, so I guess I'm really writing this is their defense. And, since many teenagers seem to be more ‘radical for Christ’ these days, they probably know the Word better than a lot adult Christians.
There are so many churches in today’s world, with males and females standing behind the podiums. I’ll never find every person who teaches the Word in a way that makes God’s ways and what He expects from the followers of His Son, Jesus Christ, very clear, but if you’re looking for someone to teach you God’s Word, I’d like to recommend Dr. Charles Stanley (, Bishop George L. Davis ( ) and Bishop T.D. Jakes ( ).

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