Stand by Me by Neta Jackson is the first in her latest Yada Yada Prayer Group series spinoff SouledOut Sisters. I truly enjoyed this book. I'd quit reading the Yada Yada series several years ago when minor obscenities started to appear in the books. This one is back to the way Christian fiction should be, clean and uplifting. The characters annoyed me so much that I realized the author made them do exactly what she wanted them to. I wanted to grab Kat by the shoulders and shake her, tell her to get off her "green-eco-chick" stuff and to be grateful. I wanted to tell Avis that there were more people in the world with problems than her and that it wouldn't hurt her to show some kindness to the students in the apartment below her own.
But they each got there on their own. They allowed themselves to be vulnerable and in turn ended up with a relationship with each other that they never would have imagined.
Excellent writing, compelling novel. Highly recommend and can't wait for more from this series.
About the book:
Avis Douglas and her husband, Peter, have dreamed of selling his software business to finance a two year mission effort in South Africa. But when the economy crashes, they're suddenly faced with the real possibility of bankruptcy.
When one of the co-pastors of SouledOut Community Church passes away suddenly, Avis and Peter are asked to step in and assist with the leadership of the church in the interim. but that creates an all-black leadership, fanning some subtle racial issues in their multi-cultural church. As tensions mount, they wrestle with returning to a traditional church where things would be easier.
Meanwhile, Kate Blanchard arrives in urban Chicago with three friends. Their vision of radically following Jesus--from dressing in second-hand clothes to trying to live green--only adds to the unrest at SouledOut Community Church. When Kate attaches herself to Avis as a mentor, Kate's good heart but lack of wisdom drives Avis nuts. Before long they realize that the body of Christ needs all parts--and Avis will see that she needs Kate's joy in following Jesus as much as Kate needs Avis' wisdom.
This book was provided for review by BookSneeze.