Review of Saints and Sailors: Christian Fiction from Pam Rhodes

Leah Courtney
I've come to really enjoy fiction written by British authors- especially stories set in quaint, English villages. I'm sure everything isn't always as cute and charming as I picture it to be. But I love to read the books anyway. One the last year I've reviewed two Kregel published books from The Dunbridge Chronicles by Pam Rhodes: Casting the Net (which is actually the second book in this series) and If You Follow Me (the third book in the series). I've greatly enjoyed both and was excited to be able to review the fourth book-Saints and Sailors.

Review of Christian fiction from Kregel

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The main character in the Dunbridge Chronicles is Neil Fisher, the pastor of a small English church in a small English village. One thing I've realized in reading these books and others with an English setting by English authors is that "church" isn't necessarily the same as my conservative, evangelical church here in the US. Doctrinally and practically people may have "looser" beliefs. But that's okay. I've come to have an appreciation for the fact that, although we worship differently and believe differently, we can have the same focus to glorify God and want to serve Him.

But I digress. In this installment, Neil and his new (from the last book) wife Claire are going on a Christian cruise. They'll be joined by members of his current church and members of the church where he previously served as curate (in the first three books). The cruise will take them around Great Britain, stopping and touring sites that are important to Christian history in England- places where saints lived and served, places where groups of believers worshipped in English history.

The characters on this crew are a motley bunch. And with their interactions with Neil and with each other, readers get sometimes humorous and sometimes touching stories. There is romance in the air, relationships on the rocks, and changes coming to people's lives and hearts.

As an interesting side note: the author writes herself into the story. She has apparently helped to lead real Christian cruises, and in this story, she and her husband are a part of the leading team.

As before, I love the characters in this book. The author does an excellent job of developing a whole host of characters in such a way that I felt as if I got to know them. They become so real that I'm thinking about them and wondering what they're up to when I'm not reading. Those are the best types of books!

There are multiple story lines going on here, but they are well done, so the reader can keep them straight easily. I loved the mix of romance, spiritual growth, relationship issues, and humorous fun going on in the stories of the characters on board ship.

This is another book in the series that I can definitely recommend. I give this one 5 stars and a PG rating for content. You can find the book on Kregel here and on Amazon here.

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Leah Courtney / Author & Editor

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