Sunday, May 16, 2010

About The Spoils of Eden

The Spoils of Eden
by Linda Lee Chaiken
Review by Elaine K. Stephen

I've never been to Hawaii, but novelist Linda Lee Chaikin made me feel as if I had been there amongst the tropical breezes and beautiful foliage in 1891. I felt the personal experiences of a young woman named Eden who struggles to decide if she will follow in her father’s lifelong dream or marry her childhood sweetheart. Eden and her childhood love, Rafe struggle over their future in the Hawaiian islands amongst their missionary families and the ever present dangers of power, wealth and ambition during the revolution of the Hawaiian islands.

Following in her father’s footsteps presents the danger of contracting the fatal disease of Leprosy, a fear that is ever present in Rafe’s mind. Marrying Rafe will fulfill both of their dreams of love, a long life together and a family of their own, but the possibility of a cure lies in the balance. Will Rafe wait for her? Added into the mix are the mystery of Eden’s mother’s fate, the discovery of the truth of the death of Rafe’s father, the future of an infant child and the political future of the Hawaiian islands.

The Spoils of Eden is filled with interesting Christian characters who face the temptations of sin and the rewards of faithfulness just as you, your own family and local church members do. Eden’s references to Bible verses are both comforting and insightful throughout the story.

The reason I loved this book is because Eden’s struggles are as true to life in today’s modern world as they were in Colonial times. Christian woman of all ages struggle with the balance of nuclear family, romantic love, career choice, and how they fit into the Lord’s plan for them.

If you want to know what this young couple decides about their future and how the mysteries around them are revealed, you have to read The Spoils of Eden!

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