Monday, June 2, 2014

REVIEW: Out of the Ruins by Karen Barnett

Thank you litfuse for this free review copy.

"Abby's shattered faith in both God and man is challenged when the terrible earthquake hits 1906 San Francisco.

While her sister lies on her deathbed, Abby Fischer prays for a miracle. What Abby doesn't expect, however, is for God's answer to come in the form of the handsome Dr. Robert King, whose experimental treatment is risky at best.
As they work together toward a cure, Abby's feelings for Robert become hopelessly entangled. Separated by the tragedy of the mighty San Francisco earthquake, their relationship suddenly takes a back seat to survival. With fires raging throughout the city, Abby fears for her life as she flees alone through burning streets. Where is God now? Will Robert find Abby, even as the world burns around them? Or has their love fallen with the ruins of the city?" *

My thoughts:  I really liked this book.  The writing flowed well, with breaks even within the chapters, that made snatch reading easier.  I did tend to read too long. ~grin~ It's like that with every really good book I read.  

This isn't your regular love story.  It's so much more. Abby's journey to faith is the most significant part of this book in my eyes.  I loved the way the main characters' thoughts were often in italics after their spoken words.  The insight into the doubts and fears faced by someone struggling to believe in God but putting demands and conditions on Him was poignant.  Everyone always seems so self-assured around us, but if we could hear their inner talk, we'd be surprised. Add in a handsome man who is supposed to save the day, and things can really get muddled.

The details of the historical event were true to what I've read before about the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake.  The sense of desperation, fear, and hopelessness as well as the determination, courage, and hopefulness was displayed well.  Having recently been involved in the tornado relief and recovery efforts in Joplin, Missouri, I know what it's like to see utter destruction and desperation.  I've also seen what it means to hope in the Lord and depend on Him for provision for every little thing. God's people throughout the nation came through in a major way for Joplin, Missouri.  It's nearly rebuilt after just three years.  Lives are still healing and rebuilding. Those who seek God are the ones who find hope and peace in the midst of chaos.  Praise God, many found salvation.  What Satan meant for evil, God used for good.

I really appreciated the sense of hope and peace at the end of Out of the Ruins.  Even though there's rarely a happily ever after in the midst of destruction,  God does indeed give beauty for ashes.

About the author: 

Karen Barnett is the author of Mistaken and several articles that have been published byGuideposts and other national magazines. She lives in Albany, Oregon, with her husband, two children, and three cats. 

May I suggest?

Where Courage Calls by Janette Oke and Laurel Oke Logan


  1. Hello Dear Friend!

    How are things going for you and the family? Hows the restaurant? Are you keeping busy? I haven't been on the computer in a while and thought I better just check in and say a quick Hi!

    All is well here in Colorado. Finishing up homeschooling for the summer this week. The boys have been swimming almost every day. I love that we have a pool and we don't have to travel to swim at a public pool. Its been hot and windy for the last 2 days. They are calling for rain the rest of the week. Yay!

    Other than that, this book looks like a good one. I might have to go and buy it. Thanks for sharing your review!

    Have a wonderful week, Laura!


  2. I love a little romance mixed in amongst tragedy! Putting on my to read list. Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  3. I know what you mean Jann. I'll be over for a visit in just a bit.


Thank you for praying for me! Thank you for encouraging me so much through this cancer treatment. I have the best blog friends in the world! Yes! You!

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Laura Lane
Cancer Survivor