The Undoing of Saint Silvanus / by Beth Moore. 1.26.2018

Tyndale ISBN 9781496416476

Adult Rating: 5

Beth Moore, noted author of devotionals, has done a marvelous job on her attempt at writing fiction, even being nominated for the prestigious Christy Award.

Taking advantage of a free trip to New Orleans seems like a great idea to Jillian at the time of her estranged father’s death. She doesn’t really know why she agreed–they weren’t close, and in fact she didn’t even like him–but a change of scenery might be just what she needs. Adella Atwater explained all expenses would be paid and she could stay at her grandmother’s apartment house where Adella is the manager. Ha! Apartment house? Saint Silvanus is hardly a house at all and the disparate bunch of strangers who live there would give anyone pause.

But as is the case in life sometimes, Jillian finds herself drawn into the drama and lives of the residents (“the colorful collection of saints and sinners,” as the author calls them, again rather like life in general). Her father’s death is discovered to be a murder and Jillian becomes more entwined with the lives at Saint Sans as well as the police.

Many subjects, some considered taboo, arise in this book: abortion, tarot cards, drugs, use of God’s name in vain. The author has made it real for the reader and not pulled any punches while at the same time presenting Christianity.

The characters are intriguing, the story is compelling, and changes of heart allow one to see Christ at work in people and their relationships.

Ceil Carey, CLJ