Thursday, May 29, 2008

Claudia Mair Burney's Zora & Nicky ~ Reviewed

Zora & Nicky
Claudia Mair Burney
Paperback: 389 pages
Publisher: David C. Cook (April 2008)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0781445507
ISBN-13: 978-0781445504

Product Description

Zora Nella Hampton Johnson knows exactly where she comes from her daddy won't let her forget. Of course, for that privilege, he keeps her in Prada and Kate Spade. He chooses her boyfriend, her car, her address and ignores not only her mother, but her own love of painting, art and the old ways of her granddaddy's soulful AME church. Her daddy may be a preacher, but somewhere among the thousands of members, Zora has lost God. And she wants him back.

Nicky Parker, a recent graduate of Berkeley and reformed playboy, also suffers the trials of being a preacher's kid, and he can't remember the last time he saw eye-to-eye with his white, racist, Republican, Southern Baptist father. What he does remember and it will be forever burned in his brain despite myriad prayers to Jesus is the way Zora looked the first time he saw her.

When they meet at a Bible study far from their respective home churches, the first churlish, sarcastic sparks that fly sizzle with defensiveness. But God has a special way of feeding the flames, and though from different flocks, these two lost sheep will find Him and much, much more.

My Review:

Congratulations to David C. Cook for seriously stretching the boundaries of Christian fiction with the publication of Zora & Nicky.

Those who have been clamoring for realistic Christians between the covers of Christian fiction need look no further than Nicky and Zora, pastors' kids who carry baggage and attitudes into a "walking on eggshells" friendship.

Two vastly different and too similar backgrounds coupled with intense physical attraction ignite a relationship between a white, Baptist reformed playboy, and a name-it, claim-it trained, coddled African American Princess.

Claudia Mair Burney writes first person twenty-something male and female perspective with brutal honesty and with much grace. A handful of rag-tag friends who support the new couple make for colorful and creative teaching moments. Burney instructs on purity, immorality, beliefs, traditions, brokenness and grace through the characters who offer support. On the flip side are those characters who have heaped material goods,selfishness, hate and well-intentioned abuse on the couple.

The story veers from convicting to poignant to beautiful to raw. There were moments that I was overwhelmed with poignant writing and had to stop and catch my breath, only to cringe at the rawness that lurked on the next page.

I must warn sensitive souls, this novel contains sexual situations and if you have a diet of nice romance novels or inspiring reading, Zora & Nicky may knock your socks off in a not so pleasant way. But as I mentioned earlier...those of you that clamor for reality and need to get your hands on a copy.

Reviewed by: Kelly Klepfer

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