that saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost, but now am found
My thoughts: Many in Christian circles consider "Amazing Grace" to be one of the most moving hymns ever written. Also, many know some of the story behind the life of the hymn's author, John Newton, and how he penned the words after surviving a virtually unsurvivable storm at sea and coming to the relization that his survival was in accord with God's amazing grace. But few know about his life leading up to that event and the lovely young woman who powerfully and graciously influenced his life, Polly.
This is Polly's story, but the main character is surely John Newton. The book opens when John is 17 and Polly a bit younger. He is smitten with her. But being so young, unemployed, and not a man of faith, he is definitely not suitable material for marrying the sweet Polly - at least in Polly's father's opinion.
John's adventures have him avoiding gainful and respectful employment, being kidnapped (by a press gang - for the King's navy), traded for a better seaman, a slave and in chains along with the Africans who he had previously enslaved. He was brutally beaten and then whipped on ship for his punishment. Still God pursued him.
Told in Jody Hedlund's beautifully written and flowing story style and painstakingly researched for authenticity, Newton and Polly is a book you won't want to miss reading. It's a good book. But not only is the story enthralling, it brings to us the story of God's redemptive powers and his amazing grace in the pursuit and protection of sinners. Newton's story is that we can not sink so deep into sin that God's grace can not lift us in redemptive power.
I heartily recommend this book.
About the book: Now remembered as the author of the world's most famous hymn, in the mid-eighteenth century as England and France stand on the brink of war, John Newton is a young sailor wandering aimlessly through life. His only duty is to report to his ship and avoid disgracing his father until the night he hears Polly Catlett's enchanting voice, caroling. He is immediately smitten and determined to win her affection.
An intense connection quickly forms between the two, but John's reckless spirit and disregard for the Christian life are concerns for the responsible, devout Polly. When an ill-fated stop at a tavern leaves John imprisoned and bound, Polly must choose to either stand by his side or walk out of his life forever. Will she forfeit her future for the man she loves?
Step back through the pages of history, to uncover the true love story behind a song that continues to stir the hearts and ignite the faith of millions around the globe."
Begins September 17
ENDS October 9 @ 12:01 a.m. ET
Open to USA addresses only.a Rafflecopter giveaway
DISCLOSURE: I was provided a complimentary copy to facilitate this review of my personal opinions. I received no compensation. Winner's giveaway copy is to be provided directly to the winner by the author or publisher.