Monday, April 19, 2021

Paint the Desert by Dawn V Cahill

About the Book:

When violence visits an ordinary college campus one day in San Rafael, California, it threatens to shatter a community, and a family, in its aftermath.

Newlyweds Jon and Meg Paulson are honeymooning in Hawaii when they receive the news that Meg’s son Richard was seriously injured in a seemingly random school shooting. When they return home, they find him in a deep coma, with the doctors uncertain if he will ever recover. Meg struggles to find answers and to understand why God allowed this to happen.

With the investigation into the shooter’s motives ongoing, Meg seeks support from a local grief group, where she finds that helping another grief-stricken mother helps speed her own journey from despair to hope. But her distress is creating strain in her brand-new marriage. She also finds herself at odds with her daughter when Linzee’s gun control activism pits her against her own mother.

Meanwhile, Linzee fears the new man in her life will find out the one thing from her past she never wants him to know. Can she give her fear over to God and open her heart to love?

My Review:

Cahill writes about Christians in difficult contemporary situations and this novel is a very timely one. She explores the feelings of parents and sister when one in their family is severely injured in a school shooting. In addition to that heart breaking issue there are others covered in the book. One issue is a young gay woman changing her ways. Another is the hot topic of gun control, opposing opinions presented. We also see the ramifications of hiding sins from the past and how they generate events in the present. We also find out a bit about art therapy.

There is a great deal of thought provoking material packed into this novel. While an author generally tackles one difficult issue, Cahill went for several. Potential readers should know that there are several trigger issues in this novel. And, if you are like me, you'll not agree with some of the opinions expressed by the characters. And sometimes, it seems, Cahill expresses her own opinion, such as through the mother's blog. Nevertheless, the plot is well done and the characters are well developed. I recommend this novel if your are ready to think about some tough issues Christians are facing today.

My rating: 4/5 stars.


About the Author:

Dawn V Cahill writes stories of victorious faith for the 21st century, dealing with situations unthinkable for previous generations. She created Hot Topics Fiction, an intensive four day writers conference, help writers create stories of ordinary Christians following hard after Christ in an upside-down world. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. Her novel Sapphire Secrets was a finalist in the 2015 First Impressions Contest. You can find out more about her and read her blog at

Spring Mountain Publishing, 247 pages.

I received a complimentary digital copy of this book from the author. My comments are an independent and honest review.

(My star ratings: 5-I love it, 4-I like it, 3-It's OK, 2-I don't like it, 1-I hate it.)

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