Sunday, September 9, 2012

Two Crosses by Elizabeth Musser

book cover
Two Crosses
by Elizabeth Musser

ISBN-13: 9780781405003
Paperback: 464 pages
Publisher: David C. Cook
Released: 1996; June 1, 2012

Source: Ebook review copy from the publisher through Netgalley.

Book Description, Modified from Goodreads:
When Gabriella Madison arrives in France in 1961 to continue her university studies, she doesn’t anticipate being drawn into the secretive world behind the Algerian war for independence from France.

The people who surround her bring a whirlwind of transforming forces—a wise nun involved in smuggling children out of Algeria, a little girl carrying secret information, and a man with unknown loyalties who captures her heart. When she discovers a long hidden secret from her past, it all leads to questions about trust, faith in action, and the power of forgiveness to move beyond the pain of the past.

My Review:
Two Crosses is a Christian historical romance/suspense novel. The story was set in 1961 in France and Algeria. The vivid historical and setting details immersed me in the story. Many of the scenes were of characters in a terrorist-attacked area, so people died (including women and children), people were tortured, etc. This was more mentioned than described, and any descriptions were short and not very graphic. Still, since I wasn't sure that main characters wouldn't be killed off at any moment, it was somewhat difficult to read as I didn't want them to get hurt.

The story maintained a high level of suspense from start to finish. The suspense was created mainly by physical danger to the characters, but also from relationship tensions. The characters reacted realistically to their situations and were well-developed (though sometimes I wasn't sure about why they were acting that way), and I did want the "good guys" to survive and succeed.

Some French words were used, but you could either tell what they meant by the context or the translation was worked into the text. The characters talked frequently about trusting God and why God lets bad things happen. This was woven into the story in a natural way, and it didn't come across as lecturing to the reader or other characters.

There were no graphic sex scenes. There was a minor amount of "he cursed" style of bad language. The novel ended with everyone out of immediate danger and the story threads resolved, but with a major character headed off into danger. Overall, I'd recommend this suspenseful novel.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

Excerpt: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.

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