Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Miracle in a Dry Season - Sarah Loudin Thomas

Meeting a beautiful woman with a growling stomach isn't how Cresswell Philips, the local carpenter, wanted to be introduced to Perla Long. But that's how it happened. The pretty blonde is Delilah's niece (Delilah is the wife of the local store owner) and Perla is staying with them for a indefinite period.

Cresswell would have thought seriously about asking her out but there was one problem. Perla is a mother to a spritely five year old. How is it that they are here in the 'sleepy' town of Wise, West Virginia? Is she widowed or worse is there no father to speak of? Gossip and slander becomes rife and when a drought begins, the preacher's word is taken as Gospel and the 'harlot' is to blame.

Can Perla keep living in a town that has condemned her? Her ability of making the smallest amount of food feed a town well, originally thought a gift, is now seen as witchcraft. It's something that she wanted to hide but with the drought there was little choice. And why does she have a need/want to confess everything to Cresswell? Feeling alone and lost, Perla is desperate to leave but knows her heart is slowly but surely clamoring for a certain young man.

Thomas's plot is a simple one but beautifully told with a strong message. The writing is clean and uncomplicated but her characters are not. Cresswell is immediately likeable and his love for his parents is so strong. Yet when his father becomes seriously ill he becomes even stronger in demeanor and faith. Both this and his growing affection for Perla is leaving him a little lost. Is he able to see past her indiscretion? Was he too hasty to judge?

I knew from the moment that I finished reading Thomas' novella Appalachian Serenade that I was going to thoroughly enjoy Miracle in a Dry Season. And, I wasn't wrong. I loved every page - an outstanding debut novel. The tone is gentle, evenly paced and its charismatic, lovable characters with God-fearing yet down to earth attitudes makes this a wholly complete work. It's a homely story which envelopes you in a warm blanket of cosiness. A highly recommended read.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House publishers as part of their blogging program. The opinions expressed are my own and I am not required to give a positive critique.


  1. I think it's awesome that you enjoyed this and I always love books with strong messages that are well conveyed. I hadn't heard of this before but I will be checking it out!

    Check out my review and giveaway: http://olivia-savannah.blogspot.nl/2014/08/angeions-book-review.html

  2. Thanks Olivia - great site too.