Christian romance novels! There are thousands on the market. Many are trashy, some are worth reading, and a few are outstanding!Today’s generation loves action so many novelists open their story with a “Kiss-kiss, bang-bang, hallelujah!” as someone aptly put it. Well, I can’t and won’t begin my novels in this way. So, no, I’m not making millions as a writer and I’m sure, never will.
And yet, I am improving, slowly perhaps, but improving nevertheless—learning not to rely on religious clichés to make my book appealing to friends who won’t allow a romance in their house. I am also avoiding the temptation to caricaturize the characters I don’t like but rather try to put myself in their shoes, a virtual impossibility sometimes.
“Your books will fall through the cracks,” one friend warned. “They’re too broad for the conservative and too narrow for the liberal.” I groaned when I heard his remark, fearing it was only too true and then comforted myself there were probably very many readers who had “fallen through the cracks” themselves.
So with that rather lengthy introduction, let me present my most recent novel: “Love me and let me go.” Using the present tense, I let five of my main characters tell the story—Cherry, Angus, Dennis and others. And while the actual events are not taken from my own life, this novel is in many ways truly biographical. My heroine feels about many things just as I have felt and asks the same questions. The issues she faces are those I have faced, if not in my own life, then in the lives of those close to me.
“How can someone so right be so wrong?” my heroine asks, speaking of her devout yet controlling father who, after realizing the pain he causes his family by mistaking the voice of God for his own voice, he admits, in an agony of grief, “I have been the victim of my own sanctity!”
Yes, “Love me and let me go,” is a Christian romance novel, that is, it has romance, is Christian and is fictitious. And some of you who have read our books on prayer, or on “God and suffering,” or on Christian parenting etc. etc. may not be attracted to Love me and let me go. But, if you find it almost impossible to “love and, at the same time to let go” someone dear to you—to allow them to be their own person and find their own feet spiritually—then give my book a try. Or if you are a child who loves your parents, respects them for their Christian devotion and yet are desperately seeking to find your own feet spiritually, then maybe my heroine’s path to true freedom will help you grow into God’s will for your life.
This Christian novel isn’t perfect. There are many more brilliant books on the market. But I guarantee it will make you think. Don’t look for pat answers, but as you read, trace the thread of hope running through the warp and woof of life, woven by God’s own hand as He makes a masterpiece out of broken threads and knotted yarn, knowing that what he has done for Cherry, and Angus, and Dennis, he can do for you.