Monday, June 12, 2006

Allison Pittman's Ten Thousand Charms~Reviewed

Ten Thousand Charms
By Allison Pittman
Published by Multnomah
ISBN 1-59052-575-2

Wyoming Territories, 1860.

Gloria is in trouble. A mining camp is a merciless place when you're young, pregnant … and a prostitute. No matter. Life will not defeat her.

John William MacGregan is in despair. His beloved wide died in childbirth. And while John is a resourceful man, raising an infant daughter on his own seems impossible.

Thrown together by a seemingly cruel fate, Gloria and John Williams make a pact: She will nurse his daughter; he will raise her son. Neither asks for marriage. They are joined by necessity, noting more. But after a move to the new Oregon Territory, facing John William's faith day after day, and receiving an older woman's motherly mentoring, Gloria longs for something more. For the love she's been denied all her life. If only that life hadn't made her unfit, not only for John William … but for God.

Then tragedy strikes—making even the resolute John William question his faith. Terrified, Gloria turns to the One she has never been able to trust. But can even God save what now means more to Gloria than life itself: her newfound family?

Although compared to Francine Rivers' Redeeming Love, Allison Pittman's Ten Thousand Charms stands on its own merit. It is a different story. Instead of Hosea and Gomer, it's loosely the story of David and Bathsheba.

Pittman's characters are well written and multi-faceted. While I felt one of the conflicts introduced wasn't fully developed, there was enough thrown at Gloria to make the read satisfying. I liked the way Pittman ended the book, leaving the reader to imagine the rest. Pittman has delivered a beautiful picture of how God takes the worst of humanity and washes us clean. A murderer and a prostitute—neither one able to outrun God's amazing grace and love.

Reviewed by Ane Mulligan

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It is NOT the story of David and Bathsheba, since the relationship did not begin with lust, and he did not have sex with a married woman--he merely had "carnal feelings" for someone he was not married to. I suppose you could say Bathsheba was slutty, and David was a murderer, and parallel that with Gloria and John William's redemption, but that's taking it pretty far. I thought it stated pretty explicitly in the book that they were not the same as David and Bathsheba.