Plot: Angel's past has haunted her all her life. Sold in to prostitution at age eight, she has never known real love. When Michael Hosea comes along, asking her to marry him, she refuses. Hosea refuses to give up. He feels God calling him to break down Angel's barriers and to marry her. He takes her to his home, but she runs away. He goes after her and brings her back and she runs away again. Angel must learn that real love does exist and that Jesus awaits her acceptance of His forgiveness.
Comments: Angel is not the only character who must learn a thing or too. Michael Hosea must learn to trust God and not let His anger or desires control him. Paul, a friend of Michael's, must learn to let go of his prejudices towards Angel.
Francine Rivers cleverly brings characters and events into the lives of these people in order to break down their barriers. Michael shows Angel true love. A family moves in nearby Michael’s farm and shows Angel what a real family can look like. When Angel tells them her previous occupation they do not judge her; they tell her they want to become good friends with her. One of the members of that family falls in love with Paul and softens his heart, helping him to see past his own stubbornness. Every time Angel runs away something happens to save her from the past that seeks to control her.
Rivers does a wonderful job of developing these characters and their relationships. She spends a good twenty or thirty pages just on the prologue so the reader has an idea of Angel’s past. She tastefully describes the sex scenes without going into too many details. She never pulls a “too much information (tmi).”
As usual, Rivers spends a great deal of time bringing Biblical principles and ideas into her book. She shows the proper relationship between a married man and woman. The story parallels the book of Hosea and the thoughts of the characters as they transform liken to what goes on in the head of most believers. Throughout the book God whispers to the characters in a subtle way as if He were the conscience of the characters developed by their knowledge of the Bible. Satan also has his say in the book, but as always ends up defeated.
One of River’s most popular reads, “Redeeming Love” deserves a chance from any Christian man or woman over the age of fifteen (it may be fit for some younger, but should only be read by mature readers who can take its themes seriously and can understand the sexual part of the book).