In this novel, Beth’s predictably crazy world is knocked sideways when her unpredictable husband backs out of the family’s summer vacation. The reader tags along with her as she lives a life of faith and honesty in the sometimes messy world of learning about her relationships, going out of her comfort zone, committing to a cause or just sitting silently listening to God.
This is one of those books that you look forward to each day, and find hard to put down after just one chapter. It is effortless reading; the dialogue is completely genuine and the narrator has a light, easy-going, let-your-hair-down personality.
Beth is as unpretentious as you can get. She is my hero, as she impulsively plops herself in the midst of strangers and dangers on several occasions. She opened my eyes to how other people in other places, churches and families feel the same feelings and frustrations, even frustrations with our own idealistic, weak selves.
I could relate to Beth’s indecision over the family holiday, how we dance around the point with teenagers, and the frustrations of a large, contemporary church service. What I didn’t get was why she was so upset and offended by her husband’s need to retreat to the backyard shed in solitude, to work through a tough, career-changing, life-changing decision. Since she’d been a pastor’s wife for many years, I didn’t think that she would be so shocked over that. Consequently, I kept waiting for the main conflict of the plot to reveal itself, and never felt like I knew what direction the story was going in.
Yet The Sky Beneath My Feet inspired me. It warmed and entertained me, and challenged my faith. I saw myself in contrast with some of the characters, and wished I was more like them. Afterward, having been taken out of my comfort zone for a while, I’m glad I made the trip through this book, because I see the beginnings of an attitude shift in myself. I would certainly recommend this book and this author to others, especially those that would be willing to read it with an open mind and heart.
I originally chose this book because the author came to speak at our writer’s group several years ago, and gave us a refreshing dose of her down-to-earth personality and her passion for walking in the steps of the disadvantaged people in our society. I’d also read another book by this Christy Award-winning author that I loved, so I knew beforehand where this one was coming from. But it was full of surprises nevertheless.
I believe that challenging our attitudes and perspectives is Samson’s forte, and she does it with gentleness and humility.
[Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review, and the opinions I have expressed are my own.]