Book Reviews

Book Review: All Things New by Lynn Austin

12The war is over. The South has lost.

Josephine Weatherly struggles to pick up the pieces of her life when her family returns to their Virginia plantation. But the realities of life after the war cannot be denied: her home and land are but a shell of their previous grandeur; death has claimed her father and brother; and her remaining brother, Daniel, has returned home bitter and broken.

Her life of privilege, a long-ago dream.

Josephine soon realizes that life is now a matter of daily survival–and recognizes that Lizzie, as one of the few remaining servants, is the one she must rely on to teach her all she needs to know. Josephine’s mother, too, vows to rebuild White Oak…but a bitter hatred fuels her.

Can hope–and a battered faith in God–survive amid the devastation?

I’ve been a fan of Lynn Austin’s work for as long as I can remember. She’s one of the few authors that stays on my reread list. All Things New isn’t her latest novel, but it’s one that I recently reread. If you haven’t picked up this gem by now then let me tell you of all the reasons why you should. 🙂

What I Loved: Austin has a way of bringing historical settings to life in vivid ways. She’s one of those authors who knows how to create characters you love while not protecting them from the dangers in their world. This combination leaves the reader with a novel that feels like reality.
I enjoyed learning about the hardships in the South immediately following the war. She didn’t hide her characters from the bitterness and racial tensions common during that time.
The Biblical themes were also refreshing. Austin tackles themes such as bitterness, God’s sovereignty, and forgiveness.

Rating and Recommendation: The second time around was just as good as the first and I give it 5 stars. I highly recommend All Things New to fans of Historical Christian Fiction, especially those that enjoy the Civil War era.

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