Monday, August 31, 2015

Book Review: "Neversaid"

Neversaid by Carol Lynch Williams is a powerful book, a quick and intense read. I couldn’t put it down. I wanted to know what was really going on, what the author hadn’t yet revealed, and what would result.

It's the story of a week in the life of twins, girls just turned sixteen. The girls take turns telling the story from their points of view, Sarah through prose—Annie in poetry. Their family is falling apart. Annie has a secret that has changed her behavior, her appearance, and her attitude, in some ways for the better, some for worse. Her parents want her to change back. Sarah is concerned, but she has her own problems. She struggles with severe social anxiety and has just lost her first boyfriend. Her parents want her to be like her sister was.

Though the story, written for teenage girls, drew me in and held my attention, I was disappointed in the total absence of God. Neversaid is published by Zondervan’s Blink division, and Zondervan publishes Christian books. Blink is meant to be hopeful, not necessarily Christian, so Zondervan can get the books into places where Christian books can't go. But hope does not exist without Christ. If a book doesn't help teens understand this, what does it matter where it can go? It offers nothing other than what secular books do.

The issues these two young women were trying to handle on their own were too big, and yet so real. I would have loved for the author to show, not tell, how teens can talk to God about these issues, know He cares, sense His guidance to people who can help, and see the changes He can make in people’s hearts. Even if their parents are distracted and self-absorbed, teens don’t have to handle the stuff of life all on their own. God’s there.

But He wasn’t in this book. Not anywhere.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for this honest review.

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