Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Marjorie Preston's Essie In Progress ~ Reviewed

By Marjorie Preston
Published by Kregel
ISBN# 978-0-8254-3565-2
320 Pages

Back Cover:

Essie is burning the candle at both ends as she tries to juggle her job, her motherly duties, and her impulsive husband, Jack. Meanwhile, Hamilton, the patriarch, has taken up residence in a dilapidated sailboat on Lake Lanier, trying to forget his past. The one thing that they all have in common is their search for significance.


Jack and Essie both work for the same company. They’ve been happily married for many years. Their world starts changing when they discover there is a third child on the way. Jack and Essie start to think about live differently with another mouth to feed and more responsibility. Change! It was happening on all fronts in their lives. Essie and her husband felt overwhelmed and insignificant.

Essie seeks the counsel of a friend she says, “Your job doesn’t make you who you are. What you believe is what makes you who you are.” Ada’s pronouncement about the image-bearing child of God she was designed to be. “You were born to shimmer!”

Oh yeah, Essie was pregnant, shimmer was the furthest thing she was feeling right then. Funny though this confirmed the very thing her husband, Jack, had just told her a short time ago, “Honey, what I’m saying is your job doesn’t make you who you are! You’re a daughter of the king whether you take his new job assignment or not.”

I enjoyed how Majorie Preston showed Essie’s struggle to make sense of her changing world. A new baby was exciting but it really changed things. As a mom it’s easy to get lost in the cares and concerns of her family and lose focus of the bigger picture. Her job was making things complicated as well. Essie felt in control now but she was slowly losing it as the thought of this little one and her new job focus, how was she going to manage all of this? Her life was out of her control, the very place God could so His best work in our lives if we let Him!

I like how Ms. Tuttle talks to Essie, “If you characterize your life by what you give rather than by what you get, you will discover that extra ordinary, image-bearing child of God you were designed to be. A shinning reflection of His glory.”

God says we are to live in this world but not be of it! We have a choice to make daily, sometimes hourly—are we going to walk in what the world says we should be and what is important or are we going to listen to our heavenly Father (our creator), and what He says we are and how we are should live? It’s a struggle but well worth the fight to keep the main thing the main thing! I really liked how the author brought this out in the story through her colorful but believable characters.

Reviewed by: Nora St.Laurent
ACFW Book Club Coordinator

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