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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

A Stray Drop of Blood by Roseanna White

A Stray Drop of Blood by Roseanna White is a novel of epic proportions that blew me away. It beautifully wove together rich history, complex characters, deep spiritual content, romance, and a mesmerizing story all in an edgy and artistic package. This book is reminiscent of the highly acclaimed Mark of the Lion trilogy by Francine Rivers, yet takes its own unique twists and turns through the Roman Empire and the lives of the early Christians.

Abigail is a dangerously beautiful Hebrew slave girl living in the days of Jesus and the early church. However, she is no typical slave. She is raised and educated as a daughter of the Visibullis house, until the son Jason, a Roman centurion returns home to Jerusalem. Jason has been lured into the sinful lifestyle of the Romans and sees Abigail as a possession to be taken at will.

The story quickly enters deep waters when Abigail struggles through the emotional turmoil of being forced into the bed of the young, handsome, and charming Jason Visibillus. She is torn between guilt, resentment, and her own very natural desires for this man who grows to love her. And this is only the beginning of the tale. Abigail will continue on through many trials, heartaches, journeys, and even a personal encounter with the crucifixion.

This story delves deep into sin and the psychological consequences it creates. The author does not shy away from the dark realities of life. Instead she juxtaposes this darkness with the light of Jesus and the power of His shed blood in a way that is almost palpable and that touched me to the core.

I loved the way author contrasted Greek and Roman philosophy and mythology with Hebrew theology. It has been a long time since I have found a novel this mentally stimulating.

While this is far from the standard genre romance, fans of romantic fiction will enjoy this book for its elaborate look at love in all its many and complicated facets. This story provides plenty of passion and the happily-ever-after romance readers desire.

A Stray Drop of Blood is an excellent example of the benefits of small press publishing. Roseanna was able to break many of the “rules” confining CBA fiction and create something unique, powerful, and memorable. In addition, this book is much longer than the standard CBA historical novel, allowing it the epic scope I so appreciated.

I could go on all day about the elements of this book that I adored. Suffice to say that I give it my highest possible recommendation. This is a story that will stay with me for many years to come.

What do you think about typical Christian books? Would you prefer to read edgier and more artistic Christian fiction?

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