Friday 11 May 2018

Rightfully Ours - Carolyn Astfalk

Rightfully Ours
Carolyn Astfalk
Full Quiver Publishing
ISBN 9781987970029

Carolyn Astfalk's name is one I have come across many times over the last few years. Catholic authors I respect, and other Christian book reviews have raved about her books. I had actually purchased all three of her books but had not got around to reading any of them yet. I have almost 400 books in my to be read list on Kindle, and another 200 on Play books. So occasionally I lose sight of books I want to read. But I just finished an anthology that is coming out later this year called Secrets: Visible & Invisible 7 Amazing Stories from authors at Catholic Teen Books. Even before I had finished Astfalk's contribution Behind The Wheel, I had bumped this book to the top of my Kindle list so that it would be read next. The short story was excellent, and this novel is amazing!

This book took me completely by surprise. I had bought it because of a recommendation from an author; but had not even read the description. I started reading it because of how much I loved the short story that has two of the characters. Paul is living in the guest house (Granny flat) at the Mueller's. He is 16 and has had to move to Pennsylvania because his single parent, his father has been deployed overseas again. His older brother Sean is working for a Gas company, but the company will not allow Paul to stay with him. Rachel is the Muellers oldest child and is 14, her and Paul will attend the same school. Paul's mother died when he was young. And his father dies during this story. He has two male influences on his life, his older brother and Mr. Mueller.

This story focuses a lot on relationships. Rachel and her younger brother James. Rachel with her parents. Rachel and Paul's growing friendship and eventually romance. Paul's relationship with his brother. And many more. It is also the story about premarital abstinence, chastity, and overcoming temptation. It teaches lessons about respecting each other in relationships. It also teaches about the value and purpose of work. Weather that work is Paul's in an orchard as a summer job, or Rachel building her own garden and roadside stand to sell the fresh cut flowers. Oh, and some buried treasure.

This book is the 5th I have read from Full Quiver Publishing. It is a publisher dedicated to books with a Theology of the Body focus. All the books I have read from this publisher are great reads. They are clean and uplifting. I appreciate the publisher's goals and their books are excellent.

This was the first novel I have read by Astfalk. It is an excellent read. I cannot wait for my children to be a little order to share this book with them. I believe it will help teach my daughters and son's valuable lessons. The characters are incredibly well written. The story was fascinating, and it was very hard to put the book down. In fact, I gave up both my breaks and ate lunch at my desk, so I could keep reading it. When you consider that this is only the authors third novel it is even that much more impressive. I recommend this book and know it ill not be long before I dip into another tale from the pen of Astfalk.

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