Friday, July 27, 2007

Kathleen Popa's To Dance in the Desert ~ Reviewed

To Dance in the Desert
Kathleen Popa
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Cook Communications Ministries (April 20, 2007)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1589190947
ISBN-13: 978-1589190948

Having witnessed the violent deaths of both her husband and father in one terrible day, Dara flees to the solitude of a secret house in a remote desert valley. But she's not alone, for a strange woman dances on the distant sands of the desert. Further, Dara's begun to hear a voice in the wind that whispers it loves her, and invites her to dance. Follow Dara as she learns the art of loving despite her fears, discovers the mother who abandoned her long ago, and surrenders at last to the rhythm of grace.

My review:

Kathleen Popa's debut novel blends a heart-twistingly beautiful tale of human frailties and ugliness with the love of God working through broken characters.

From the rigid Bible professor who has God all figured out and bullet-pointed directions for anyone else who might need help, to the inner whisper that tells Dara that she is sought by God -- this story is full of forgiveness and renewal.

Love blows through the narrative like a wind across a desert, lifting, shifting and rearranging thoughts and raising questions.

Grace abounds and amazing reconciliations and understandings bloom into joy.

The characters reached in and grabbed my heart, leaving shadows of subtle influence behind.

After an initial struggle to ease into Kathleen's rhythm and voice, I caught the nuances and rode it to the solid conclusion.

A sensitivity alert -- this novel contains grittiness that may be too intense for those looking for a simple escapist read.

Reviewed by Kelly Klepfer


Gina said...

I recently started this novel and I love this writer's voice almost as much as I loved your review :)

Anonymous said...

Hee-hee ... I love this writer! She's a total sweetheart, and I can't wait to continue to hear about how her work is touching her readers. Thanks for the review. And Katie, girlfriend, enjoy the ride!!! : )

Kathleen Popa said...

Kelly, thank you so much for your kind review. I think I'll tuck this one in my purse, next to the baby pictures...

I'm proud to see my book on Novel Reviews.