Midnight in Eden – Book Review


Dear friends,

Recently I read author, Tommy Crown’s novel, Midnight in Eden. Here’s my review if this unusual fiction story based on bible characters.

They finally found Eden. The journey took centuries. Began when she was a lass. She’s chased Cain Holt through the centuries.

Midnight in Eden- Killing CainIn the land of Nod. Cain goes mad. Becomes a vicious killer. She is Cain Holt’s mother. She prepares to battle him.

London, 14 Whitehall Court. C+G, home of London’s gov’t offices. Including  the BBA, Bureau of British Agents. The super spy Carter Pick, code named, “Ice.” Early thirties.

The Chief, son of the Duke of Dorsey is charge of BBA. He’s approaching eighty. Forgetful. His job: to keep the United Kingdom safe. Mrs. Button is the Chief’s secretary. Carter is meeting the Chief today in his office. They talk about Cain Holt. The master serial killer who claims to be the son of Adam and Eve.

Cain is now a mass murderer in Cape Town. They receive a tip from his mother claiming to be Eve. From the Garden of Eden. 6000 year old lady. Ice is on his way to Cape Town. His new partner, Agent Giles Wainwright.

Cain is an olive colored man. He’s on British Airways flight 11443 to Cape Town. In less than a second, he rapes a flight attendant. During the violent act, his face changes into a tiger with a giant red tongue. Transforming back to human, he fled the airborne plane in the wheel housing.  The flight attendant was found mauled by a tiger. A passenger was missing.

Eve St. John, the olive colored lady, is waiting to talk to Carter Pick in a bar at Cape Grace, at the harbor. At Siren’s; a bar for a late brunch.  She is 6000 years old. Eve wants to save the world.

Farms in the Midwest experience the death of their livestock without explanation.

Carter and Eve are at Cape Grace. Her work is to stop Cain. He’s crazy. That’s why she’s still alive. Cain made a deal with the devil. He has powers, given by Lucifer. That’s why he hasn’t died. He’s responsible for the bad in the world. Eve made a deal with God so she could stop Cain.

Cain can transform into anything with blood flow.  Birds, Tiger, etc…. Eve can transform into other females, only. Change her hair anytime.

A tsunami hits Cape Town, meant to kill Eve and Carter, sent by Cain. Thousands killed and homeless. Eve and Carter already left on his jet, the “Black Mariah”.

Flying to Morocco. To visit Heaten College, Dr. Ravenwood. Professor of Egyptian Art and Antiquities and archaeology. They talk at the Crow’s Nest saloon in Gloucester.

A plaque of locust attacks corn and cotton in Texas and other states.

Carter wants Dr. Ravenwood’s opinion on Eve. After she identifies an ancient artifact, the professor is convinced. “This is Eve of the Garden of Eden.”

They’re on their way to Nepal. Mitzi Moore manages a bar there. Very short lady. At the foothills of the Himalaya’s. She’s an expert in hieroglyphs and antiquities and speaks six languages, from the Bronx, NY. After convincing Mitzi of Eve’s authenticity, and explaining the mission to kill Cain, she joins the group. They fly to Tel Aviv.

The devil anointed Cain, Lord Chester. Gave him supernatural powers. He has jet black hair, in a ponytail. He sold his soul to the devil in 3880 b.c. after praying for the death of Eve.

In Tel Aviv, Charley, Mitzi, Carter, and Eve ask Dr. Faruk about a papyrus.  Faruk deciphers, “A letter to King Ramesses II from his wife Nefertari. Warning about Cain and a female born around 3944b.c.”  Eve added, “August 13th . She’s the female in the letter.”  The group drives to Tel Aviv University. Looking for the Yamam. “The flood wiped out Eden in 2849b.c.,” Eve says. “It was in Mesopotamia.” She is nearly 6000 years old. They are looking for the portal to the Garden of Eden. Go back in time to before the flood to find Adam and kill Cain.

Eve fills in many missing pieces to the story of Genesis. She is Cain’s birth mother. Lucifer is the dad. Eve was impregnated supernaturally.

God’s name is Amun. His wife’s name is Ashera.

Cain has many demon brothers and sisters helping him. If they can find Cain’s money, they can find him. Money is the root of all evil.

The stock market crashes. Biggest since 1929. The President of U.S. calls President of the World Bank. He says to call Lord Chester, the English Lord, in Tel Aviv.

The Greek Island, Thera. Charley, Mitzi, Carter, Eve, and Dr. Faruk are there. The World Bank is there. Lord Chester’s bank. The bank’s clients are countries. At the bank, Eve receives a key to a safety deposit box with a Mayan symbol. Pietras Negras. They’re off to Colombia.

In Colombia, Bogata. They talk to Wainwright—an expert on the Mayan calendar. Major Billy Jo Burns joins the group. Critical Bill. Combat pilot. She flies critical missions.

Cain wants to kill Eve and destroy Earth by fire, then live in some other galaxy with Lucifer.

Everyone is in Critical Bill’s chopper, the Black Pearl. In the Valley of the Dolls at Petras Negras. At the bank, Eve hands Juan the key. He knows her and brings her a manila envelope. Juan was Cain in disguise. In the envelope, two tickets to the opera in Milan.

At the opera, Lord Chester is there. He places a bomb in the opera house. Luckily, Charley and Mitzi are outside when the bomb goes off. The bomb was meant for Eve. Hundreds are killed and injured. She is injured in the blast. At the hospital, Mitzi dies. Eve brings her back to live.

Rad Holt calls his brother, Cain. Tells him Eve is still alive. He is told to go to Eden and prepare for the battle. Take knives, swords, ropes, whips, big pole in the center with 2 chains.

In Rio, they stay at the Copacabana, in Penthouses.  Mitzi is having trouble with this whole bible character thing. She is finally convinced. Cain and Eve must be in Eden to die.

Rio is celebrating Carnivale, the southern hemisphere’s Mardi Gras. The gang joined the party dressed festively. Cain is there.  He and Eve chat on the beach. They have to find the portal to Eden. Lucifer’s instructions, it must be midnight in the garden. He’s promised eternal life for killing Eve. The plan, a fight to the death in Eden. He hands her a note. When illuminated, the time and date of a fight. Summer solstice. Midnight, June 21, 2016. Latitude and longitude numbers to the portal to Eden. Only a few weeks away.

Cain turns into a Tiger and kills many in the parade.

Knowing the world’s coming to an end, Charley proposes to Mitzi. “Yes, yes, yes.”

Lord Chester lives in Cornwall, England. In a castle called Overlook. Lucifer visits him there. He’s Mad!  Cain hasn’t killed Eve yet. He wants Cain to start a nuclear war. He wants Earth destroyed. Wants to live in the Andromeda Galaxy.

As exhibit in Rio, Noah’s Ark. They meet Barbie, her kids, Hercules, Zena, Nemo. Husband, Noah. The ark is their home, it sails. Noah shows them nautical maps. Charley reads them. He knows where the longitude and latitude numbers to Eden are. Las Vegas, Nevada.

Carter sends Critical Bill in his jet to destroy Lord Chester’s castle in Cornwall.

In Vegas, Charley and Mitzi prepare to marry.

Major Burns destroys the castle.

Lucifer will kill Eve himself. Chester needs only to get her to the portal.

Iran launched a nuclear missile at the U.S. It’s up to Bill to stop it with the Black Mariah.

Cain’s in Vegas. Lucifer took away his powers. In a dither, he left his carry on with all his money, credit cards, important papers, etc.. in a taxi. He’s Cain. No gifts or powers.

Amum, God, was in the cockpit next to Bill as she redirected the missile. A calm came over her. The cockpit was a haze blue.

The wedding. Graceland Chapel. The preacher is dressed like Elvis. A quick wedding.

The portal is The Luxor Hotel and Casino. It’s shaped like a pyramid.

Carter and Eye say their goodbye’s. Carter is Adam from the Garden of Eden.

They enter the Black Pearl. Critical Bill lifts off.  She flies the chopper into the beam of light coming from the heavens, going into the casino. They jump into the beam.

Instantly, Adam and Eve are in Eden. It’s exactly the same. Green and lush. Tame animals.

They find the place Cain prepared for the battle. A bear tree with chains with cuffs.

Amum spoke from above, “There will be no fight. Cain is dead. I sent the missile to him. It killed Cain and Lucifer. They lived in the sun. You call it hell. ”

Amum is giving Adam and Eve a second chance. No devil. Eat what they want. Have children.

Charley and Mitzi are there.

Noah and his family are there as well.

The end.

This had to be the craziest serial killer story I’ve ever read. It is based on a few bible characters but definitely not the bible. It is a fantasy fiction plot.

The novel bounces around a lot and could be confusing.

The writer gives an enormous amount of power to Cain. He has virtually unlimited powers, granted by Lucifer, his Father. All the evil and destruction in the world is because of Cain.

Overall, I liked the book. It was interesting.

My rating: 4 stars

May good fortune guide your path.

J.A. Ireland




The Jesus Papers – Book Review



Recently I read, The Jesus Papers; by author Michael Baigent. This is a very provocative novel similar to Dan Brown’s; The Da Vinci Code. It’s written from a historian perspective rather than a novel format.

The story begins with the introduction; May 28, 1291, The Holy Land: Acre, the Crusader Kingdom’s last port city, lay in ruins. The Arab armies of Khalil al-Ashraf, the young Sultan of Egypt, had first besieged and then attacked the city. The last capitol of the Christian Kingdom was finished. This was a battle between The Marshal of the Templars and the Sultan.

The Jesus PapersMichael Baigent gives the Templars credit for introducing the power of money over the sword by means of checks and safe financial transfers from city to city and country to country. They helped open a space for the middle class, according to Michael.

He and Richard Leigh wrote Holy Blood, Holy Grail. They believe in an important bloodline, a dynasty; that of the Jewish royal lineage, the line of David. They believe the line of David lives in Southern France; a descendant from the marriage of Jesus and Mary Magdalene. The wedding at Cana was Jesus and Mary’s wedding. When Jesus turned the water into wine, they were Mr. and Mrs. Christs, according to Michael and Leigh.

In Chapter 1 Michael writes, during his twenty-year search, he believed when Jesus was crucified, he either had a child by his wife or she was pregnant.

He also writes, both kings and high priests were anointed and were thus a meshiha, a messiah.  In fact, he writes, from as early as the second century B.C. the term “messiah” was used to name a legitimate king of Israel, one of the royal line of David, who was expected to appear and to rule. According to the Gospels, through his Father, Jesus was of the Line of David; through his mother, he was of the line of Aaron the high priest.

Michael restates several times in this story; in his novel Holy Blood, Holy Grail, the wedding at Cana was Jesus and Mary’s wedding. He believes at the crucifixion, Mary already had Jesus’ baby or was pregnant with Jesus’ baby. He claims; if Jesus was unmarried and celibate, Paul would have told us. He admits there is no proof to support his allegation; only circumstantial evidence. He cites the 1977 publication, Nag Hammadi; the Gospel of Philip. Also The Gospel of Mary as his evidence.

His book centers around the concept; The Church is at pains to conceal secrets about Jesus. One incident he cites; Jesus entered Jerusalem on a donkey. He believes Matthew’s account is filled with cover-ups. He explains his theories in detail in the story.

Michael Baigent also questions Jesus’ death on the cross. In this book, he analyses details in the bible and cross references them with his own understanding of history. He believes God’s Word is impregnated with cover-ups—thus the cover text; Exposing the Greatest Cover-Up in History.

He believes the Church is covering up Jesus’ life on Earth and offers no solid proof to support his claims.

To be fair, I reread John 2: 1-11-NIV; Jesus Changes Water to Wine. “On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, They have no more wine.”

“Dear woman, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My time has not yet come.”

His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”

Nearby stood six, stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons.

Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim.

Then he told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.”

They did so, and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine. He did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew. Then he called the bridegroom aside and said, “Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.”

This, the first of his miraculous signs, Jesus performed at Cana in Galilee. He thus revealed his glory, and his disciples put their faith in him.

Many believe God’s Word is flawless and perfect—without cover-up; and to be followed as written—not manipulated or twisted.  Countless would disagree with Michael Baigent or anyone else’s theory that the wedding in Cana was a wedding between Jesus and Mary Magdalene. And that Mary was either pregnant or had Jesus’ child before the crucifixion.

Hosts would also disagree with Michael’s conclusion that if Jesus was unmarried and celibate, Paul would have told us. Because something isn’t stated, doesn’t presume it to be factual.

Dan Brown’s novel, The Da Vinci Code, was entertaining fiction about the same  hypothesis. I read the book and watched the movie, enjoying both. I’m a big Tom Hanks fan.

Michael Baigent’s story, The Jesus Papers, is about the same topic while also fiction;  without Dan Brown’s writing skills.

My rating: 2 stars

May good fortune guide your path.

J.A. Ireland

The Forgotten Isle – Book Review


Dear fantasy fans,

The last two days, I’ve been reading a fun fantasy about Prince Arthur before he was the Arthur we all know.  This story also has a strong section of faith and is a clean family book so I’m putting it on my faith blog. Here’s my review of this delightful story by author, L.E. Engler.

Taran’s story; April 3, 2200 BCE Ireland. The last day of classes for the warm season. Planting starts tomorrow. Taran, son of King Tuan is a good farmer. His brother E’lan. Twenty five field hands. Master Sreng is their teacher. Taran’s sisters are Taltiu and Aine’.

The Forgotten IsleTonight is planting feast. They wear their best tunics. E’lan is 16 and very tall. In line to be the next king. Handsome. Golden hair.

Suddenly they’re under attack. Their city is Finias. The horde are coming, an army of them. Taran ran home with his sister Taltiu.

Finias has an army of over 1000 fighting men. The battle raged for four hours. E’lan is wounded in the battle. He wasn’t wearing armor. He dies.

The Kullucks were the attackers. Huge, misshapen, brutal animals—powers of evil. Senchos the footless is their leader. He escaped.

King Tuan sends for help. He sends for courageous Firbolg to help with the next battle. Taliesin goes with the runners to Firbolg.

Two days later; E’lan’s funeral. E’lan is burned to ashes as with their religious customs. His ashes are placed in the funeral pyre.

Taran is more of a builder and a farmer. Not a leader or warrior. King Tuan gets word from his runner, the Kullucks are only a day away.

Soon the nomadic Firbolg arrive. Five hundred well trained fighting men. Now that Taran is to be the next king, after the death of his older brother E’lan, he and King Tuan and the Firbolg chieftains prepare. Malred, the Firbolg chieftain. Sigrid, chief of the Thistle Clan. They discuss their defense.

The next day, a runner reports the Kullucks are only hours away. Soon they attack the city. Thousands of monsters. Taran hides in in the watch tower. The King’s army’s quickly fall. The city is destroyed. At dusk, the Kullucks retreated to the forest. People fled to the ancient caves.

May 24, 500 A.D. Wales; Prince Arthur is 12. Growing up in Wales with Aunt Morgana. Older cousin Cai. Best friends Gwain. Arthur’s father, King Uther, King of Britons. Arthur’s mother is Igraine. Friends with the Wizard Merlin.

Uther hid Arthur with Morgana where he was safe from Merlin and his mother. Morgana lives with the Sea People. Arthur and his friends train every day with their swords.

Suddenly, Arthur is transported away from Morgana’s seaside compound. He meets a beautiful woman. April 7, 2200 B.C.E. Ireland. The woman’s name is Danu. She’s immortal and magic. Through time, the Greeks called her Gaia, Romans- Terra, People of the Emerald Isle- Danu. She is Earth Mother. She has been on earth since the beginning of time. Put here by God, The Maker, The Great Spirit. They are in the Emerald Isle. Southern Ireland. The Planes. Time travel. She needs Arthur’s help.

The Kullucks are there. Creatures spawned from the Underworld. Led by Senchos the Footless. Danu describes to Arthur the battle that destroyed Finias and killed the king’s son, E’lon. She wants his help. She wants him to help King Tuan. Arthur agrees. He and Danu makes plans.

They cross Senmag, the plane of souls. A resting place for the dead. Danu explains their faith in length as they pass through the plane.

King Tuan is in the dolmen with his son’s ashes. Arthur and Danu reach the King. Arthur asks him about the Kullucks. Tuan explains, “Senchos is half human half Kullucks. Mother was human. He has clawed hands but human feet. Thus the name footless. He’s evil. His mother abandoned him and fled back to her people for her own safety. Soon she went Mad. Then died. Senchos, due to being half human is the only Kullucks with any intelligence. He’s their leader.”

Arthur soon learns about unicorns. The healing powers of their horns. The’re hunted for their horns so they hide. He talks to a girl unicorn. Thought speak! He gets an idea. Trap the evil monsters rather than fight them. The unicorn is willing to act as bait since the Kullucks eat them as food.

He asks King Tuan, “Is there a sage in Finias with magic skills?”

“Master Sreng, our sage who teaches the children is adept in magic arts,” King Tuan replies.

Danu leaves King Tuan and Arthur to their work. She watches from afar.

Tuan and Arthur return to Finias. The city is in ruins. Master Sreng’s home was destroyed. He’s staying in the King’s home. He looks like an old wizard. Long white hair, long white beard. Face cracked with age. Very tall.

Arthur needs Sreng’s magic. Using the unicorn as bait into the plane of souls, baiting the Kullucks into the plane. Then Sreng can send them to another realm. To the UnderWorld. Master Sreng will surround the plane of souls with bronze spears and swords laid end to end, then enchant the ring of bronze. This will hold the Kullucks until the incantation spell sends them to the UnderWorld.  King Tuan, Arthur, and Sreng began the plan.

Dis, the demon who rules the UnderWorld. The UnderWorld is an Underground city. Enu visited the UnderWorld and was given a talisman that belonged to Dis. It has magical powers. A wooden, spiral shaft with a demon head. Many magical powers.

Soon, Dis took Enu back to the UnderWorld to the people he met down there as he promised by using the magic talisman.

Taran calls Danu a witch and challenges Arthur. Arthur explains he’s from the future. 3000 years. Danu brought him here to help.

The Kullucks were charging across the planes, led by Senchos the Footless. Thousands of them. They saw the unicorn in the brass ring and followed into the ring. The unicorn galloped out when they were all in the circle.

Master Sreng proclaims, “Enchantus Magicus! Bind this circle. Do not let it break. Magicus enchantus!” The enchantment holds. The Kullucks are trapped.  Sreng orders Dis to take the Kullucks back to the UnderWorld, after summoning him.

Dis closed the door to the UnderWorld without taking the Kullucks. He did set them free from the magic ring, but blinded them.

The next day Arthur suggests they build a moat around the city. The King orders the project to begin. The moat only partially works, killing many but the city is still invaded. The people flee to the cellars again.

Next Arthur suggests they build a catapult. Throw flaming bombs made of cloth soaked in oil and lit on fire. The machine is built and they wait.

Arthur explains to Taran that time could snap him back to his own time soon. And about Danu.

Soon, the Kullucks attack.

“Fire!” King Tuan orders. The fire engulfed half the horde of advancing monsters.

Just then a shimmering light engulfed Arthur. He was at Morgans’s compound home.

Dis, the evil demon appeared in flames with the Kullucks. The Leader of the UnderWorld took the Kullucks through the large whole down to the UnderWorld in a blaze of fire and an explosion. All that remained in the field was burning grass.

Everyone assumed the Kullucks had gotten Arthur. That he was dragged into the UnderWorld. Taran knew to keep his friend a secret.

Arthur was back in his world. He too kept his story a secret.

Danu watched over the people of Finias as they rebuilt their city. History left the Emerald Isle behind. And what of Arthur? His story speaks for itself.

The End

There is a section where Arthur and Danu are crossing Senmag, the plane of souls. Danu explains it is a resting place for the dead. Danu explains their faith in length as they pass through the plane. That’s why I decided to put this review on my faith blog.

I also liked the way Taran came into power. His older brother E’lan, who was in line to be king, was killed in battle due to not wearing armor. No conspiracy there.

Dis, the ruler of the UnderWorld, shared many characteristics with bible demons.

The Forgotten Isle by author, L.E. Engler is a delightful story about young Prince Arthur. I enjoyed reading it. It is very clean. Very well written.

My rating: 5 stars

May good fortune guide your path.

J.A. Ireland

The Mystery of God’s Will; What Does He Want For Me? – Book Review


Dear Faith Readers,

Recently I had the opportunity to read Charles R. Swindoll’s book about God’s Will—What does He want for me?  This is a question that I have struggled with from time to time — perhaps others have too.

I read this book to learn Chuck’s insight on God’s Will and the scars that many believers have. In this book, the author believes God encourages scars. So many believers are well scared. It’s easy to take that point of view.

The Mystery of God's WillIn this book,Chuck takes the strong view that everything we experience, good and bad, is God’s plan and His will—everything. When something bad happens to us it’s God’s Permissive Will. God permitted it to happen. He admits many times throughout this book to not understanding God’s Will—especially God’s permissive will; it’s a mystery, according to him.

I found the section on how God leads us interesting. According to Chuck, God leads us with the Bible, inner prompting of the Holy Spirit, and through the counsel of wise, qualified, trustworthy people. Finally, God leads us into His will by giving us an inner assurance of peace.

Another part I found interesting is, The Truth About Holiness. Chuck says, His holiness assures us that he is absolutely trustworthy. No deceitful agenda, no questionable motives. A model of perfection.

The section on God closing doors was also interesting. He says when God closes a door in our lives, He opens another. He also says, a door that God closes, no one can open. A door that God opened, no one can close.

He says most of life is learning and growing, falling and getting up, forgiving and forgetting, accepting and going on. He concludes this book by saying, God’s will—That’s right, M-Y-S-T-E-R-Y.

I read this book to get the perspective of a very big, charismatic minister. I thought his answers on these life altering questions to be theological—seminary based. Interesting but arguably helpful. Especially when he refers to these issues as a mystery.

God’s Will and the painful things that sometimes happen as a result of us doing God’s Will are confusing issues for me and perhaps you as well.

There you have it. God’s Will; a Mystery according to Charles R. Swindoll. Our lives are His plan. Everything. Even the pain. I’m still… confused? Uneasy?

My rating: 4 stars

May good fortune guide your path.

J.A. Ireland

Healing Ruby – Book Review


Dear faith readers,

According to author Jennifer H. Westall, her novel Healing Ruby is an inspirational story that is uplifting, so I read it.

Here’s my review: The story is set in Northern Alabama, Hanceville and Good Hope. Near Cullman. Ruby Graves is asked to clean the dinner dishes again, due to being the daughter. After being taunted by Henry, her brother, in a rage, she throws a kitchen knife at him. It lodges in his neck. He survives the accident.

Healing RubyThe stock market crashes. It’s October 1929. Abner Graves, the dad is very ill from diabetes. He’s going to lose his feet.

“Are you going to die?” Ruby asks her Dad.

Abner evades the question. “No one knows what God’s plan is.”

James, Henry, and Ruby are the children. Ruby, fourteen, is a bean bole and antisocial. Henry plays basketball for the Good Hope basketball team.

A week before Christmas, Abner’s right foot is scheduled for amputation. On Friday afternoon. They celebrate Christmas on Thursday night. Ruby got a new summer dress.

Later Ruby gets her first job. She helps with cleaning at Mrs. Doyle’s home. Matthew Doyle, the son has T.B. He’s dying.

The first of April, Abner lost his other foot. He asked Ruby to read Matthew Chapter 9 to him. Then 2 Corinthians Chapter 4 vs 15…For comfort.

Matthews’s minister, Reverend Cass, says that God inflicted him with T.B. and God will bless him because of it. Matthew’s faith is crushed because of it as he coughs up more blood.

Several months later, Abner’s kidney’s begin to fail. Dr. Fisher tells the family his time is short.

The funeral was hard for Ruby. God had not healed her Dad as she had prayed for. Instead God had chosen to take him. Her faith was in question. Asa, Abner’s brother shows up at the funeral which causes a disturbance.

Reverend Cass persists with Matthew that his T.B. is punishment for his sins. He needs to repent and learn what God wants to teach him.

Asa was a minister many years ago. He lost his way. Asa believes Ruby has the gift of healing.

Matthew begins to improve. Ruby takes him outside. She lets him shoot a basket, which he makes. It causes a lung hemorrhage. Ruby gets Uncle Asa Graves to pray with her for Matthew’s healing but Asa has lost his faith. Soon Asa prays for healing for Matthew and he begins to improve. The prayers seem to be answered.

Due to Matthew’s continued recovery, Ruby was no longer needed to care for him. She lost her job at the Doyle house.

Mr. Campbell, the banker, informs the Graves kids that the mortgage is three months past due. Mother already knew. He informs them the property is being put up for auction in a week. Thirteen farms in Good Hope so far that month have been auctioned off for back payments.

The family is legally removed from the property. James tells them he’s found a place for them to live. Mr. Calhoun’s place. One of his tenant houses. They can work the land for half the profit and live there free. “Share-cropping?” Henry and Ruby objected, “Slavery!” James is marrying Emma Rae, Calhoun’s daughter to ensure his family is treated fairly. Next year, if Calhoun allows. Mom agrees. “What choice do we have?” June 25, 1931 they left the farm.

Their new place is a shack in a field. Tiny stove. One cabinet. Tiny fireplace. No furniture. One tiny bedroom. The family settles into their new life as share-croppers. Mrs. Graver volunteers at the soup kitchen where the family gets many free meals.

Ruby meets a very poor, black share-cropper mother and son, Hannah and Samuel. Hannah is pregnant. She claims to have been raped by the devil himself. Ruby believes she is called to help Hannah and Samuel. She begins to bring them food. Reverend Cass expresses his disapproval. According to Cass, she is overstepping her boundaries. Mrs. Graves begins to suspect Pastor Cass is crooked and sinister.

Henry leaves the home in the middle of the night after a big family argument.

Ruby meets Pastor Shaw from Colony, Hannah’s minister. He warns her to discontinue these visits and food gifts. She could be making powerful people angry. He tells Ruby to stop reading to Samuel. Ruby begins to wonder if she’ll ever meet a preacher that actually practices God’s Word.

Pastor Cass finds Ruby in the food pantry. Accuses her of stealing food for that N…. and half-breed child and demands that she leave. She’s no longer welcome there. “You are the most horrible man I have ever known!” Ruby shouts in anger. “By the same measure you judge everyone else, you also will be judged!”

Soon, Reverend Cass makes good on an earlier threat and sabotages their cotton prices. James is given a reduced price for his cotton due to Ruby’s involvement with Hannah and Samuel. Another family fight ensues; this one is between James and Ruby.

Hannah is beaten up. The food is destroyed. Ruby is confused and crushed. Chester, Calhoun’s son is there. He’s involved with Reverend Cass. To teach Ruby a lesson to leave colored people alone, Chester beats her, breaking four ribs, a concussion, deep cuts in her forehead and leg.

Soon thereafter, Ruby leaves home and goes to Good Hope to live with her Grandmother Graves and Asa.

There, she learns the family secrets from Uncle Asa. Grandma Graves is dying. After her death, Asa tells Ruby it’s time for her to go home.

Ruby confronts Reverend Cass. Tells him she knows he was behind her being beaten up. That she forgives him. His sin is against God now. She accuses him of not being saved. “A goat.” She left and would never set foot in Reverend Cass’s church again.

Ruby goes to Hannah and Samuel’s home again with food. Matthew drove her. He tells her they put together enough food and clothes to get Hannah and Samuel through the winter and took it to them. Matthew built them a very small home out of wood. All while Ruby was away.

Henry came home for Christmas. Right away James picks a fight about him running away from his responsibilities. Henry left again in the middle of the night.

Ruby visits Dr. Fisher. He refuses to help Hannah due to the color of her skin. Ruby asks for instructions about birthing a child since Dr. Fisher won’t help.

Matthew and Ruby confront Chester in front of Calhoun about his attack on Ruby. Chester admits he and his dad, Calhoun, were both raping Hannah as much as they wanted, as often as they wanted. Matthew and Chester begin to fight. They stop brawling due to a tornado.

Hannah is severely injured in the violent storm and forced into labor. Ruby delivers the baby on the side of the road, with Samuel’s help. Matthew soon arrives in his truck and drives them to Cullman Hospital, an all-white hospital. Desperately hoping Hannah would be treated. Her condition was critical.

At the hospital, the doctor refused to treat Hannah. “We don’t treat colored in this hospital.” Ruby works on Hannah herself with bandages that Matthew finds and with prayer.

Even though Matthew was the beneficiary of healing from prayer, he says he doesn’t believe in healing from prayer. Or God’s healing. Ruby breaks up with him. Tells him to leave. He leaves.

Ruby finds Dr. Fishes down the hall. Tells him about Hannah. He helps her. Orders surgery for her arm.

Ruby runs into Reverend Cass at the hospital when she is praying with the injured and getting them water. Cass is furious. He says the tornado is God’s judgement for their sins. They argue about Cass’s right to judge. He points his finger at Hannah’s baby. “And this abomination will not be tolerated. Judgement day will come.”

Dr. Fisher drove Ruby, Hannah, and her kids to Colony and her family when she was discharged. Calhoun is Samuel’s father, Hannah tells Ruby. Hannah, Samuel, and Isaiah live with Hannah’s mom and dad now.

Asa is staying with the Graves again. He’s helping clean up after the tornado.

Matthew came back to talk with Ruby. She tells him goodbye. She’s pursuing God’s plan for her life.

The End

This is a tragic story on many levels. The financial collapse of the Graves family after Mr. Graves died is horrific. The injustices that Hannah is forced to endure because of the color of her skin is unimaginable.

I hope that as Ruby grows, her faith remains as strong.

I found Healing Ruby to be more full of tragedy than I was expecting. Ruby’s faith, strength, and stubborn was much more than I expected, especially for a very young girl. Perhaps a bit too young for the story. Overall I enjoyed the book. Everything except the bigotry. Set during the great depression in Northern Alabama.

My rating 4.5 stars

May good fortune guide your path,

J.A. Ireland

The 7 Most Powerful Prayers – Book Review


Dear faith readers,

Recently I read an interesting short story about prayer by minister and author, Adam Houge. The 7 Most Powerful Prayers That Will Change Your Life Forever

The review begins; These prayers must be prayed in faith according to the author.

The 7 Most Powerful PrayersPrayer OneThe Most Powerful Prayer You’ll Ever Pray – John 3:16-17

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.”

The author includes a prayer to accept Christ as Savior and Lord.

The Lord’s Answer, “Oh Beloved! Oh My precious child! I’m so happy with you! I’m so proud of you!”

Prayer TwoAbiding In Spirit – John 15:4

“Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.”

God calls us to do these every day. Worship. Pray. Read and Meditate on the Scriptures.

The Prayer: “Lord. I dedicate myself to your Holy Spirit…”

The Lord’s Answer: “Beloved, come close to Me. Sit close by my side…”

Prayer ThreeBeing Led By The Spirit – Romans 8:14

“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.”

God considers His sons to be those who are led by His Spirit.

The Prayer: “Lord, show me Your way, and light my path. Teach me to walk with you. Your way. I want to please you.

The Lord’s Answer: “Beloved, I must lead you. I have said to you that you do not know the way we are going.”

Prayer Four – Seeking Truth – The Greatest Stumbling point of the church is in the department of doctrine.

Gal 1:8 “But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.”

The Prayer: God, I commit myself to You to find Your truth in everything. Lord I fear You and know that those who don’t live according to your gospel can’t be saved.

The Lord’s Answer: “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth!”

Prayer Five – Walking In Love

When we grow in love we also learn to grow in kindness. Love and kindness go hand in hand.

The Prayer: “Lord, I commit myself to having a servant’s heart. Make my heart like Yours. Please open my eyes to see those in need around me. And give me what is necessary to deliver them.”

The Lord’s Answer, “Love is the substance of who I AM. Without love, you can never know me. I am love and because I have loved you, you are saved.”

Prayer Six – Seasoning Our Words With Salt

Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each other. Col 4:6

The Prayer: “Lord. I dedicate myself from this time forward to having words that edify and heal. I know Your judgement and fear You.

The Lord’s Answer, “Beloved, every word of Mine is Holy. My words always lead you back to Me. They bring salvation and life.”

Prayer Seven – Continual Devotion

Our day to day activities can be overwhelming. Spend time with God.

The Prayer- “Lord, strengthen me through my day. Give me strength to sit daily in Your presence.”

The Lord’s Answer, “I can’t wait! Will you spend a little time with me tonight? I want to be with you! You’re so precious to Me!”

The End

This is my synopsis of author and minister, Adam Houge’s best-selling book in the spiritual section of Amazon Kindle; The 7 Most Powerful Prayers That Will Change Your Life Forever.

Perhaps you’ll wish to download it and read the inspirational book yourself to get the full effect. I downloaded it free through my Kindle Unlimited subscription.

My rating: 4 stars

May good fortune guide your path,

J.A. Ireland