Book Review: How the Light Gets In by Jolina Petersheim
It is actually hard to write this review.
I want my review to reflect the depth of emotion, character, and linguistics that Jolina Petersheim used to convey the touching and beloved story of Ruth. It. Is. Hard. Most everyone who knows me would say that I love books I read a lot of them (and I do mean a lot). Because of that I kind of get bored of the same old same plot that most stories today use, so when I actually find that Diamond in the Ruff (I just watched Aladdin sorry) I share it with my family saying “This book can change your life, please take the time to read it”. This book is one of those.
“How the Light Gets In” by Jolina Petersheim is a wonderful modern retelling of the Biblical story of Ruth & Boaz. I am not usually one to read retellings of Biblical stories, as I think that the Bible tells them best. This however is more of an applied story if that makes sense. Jolina takes the story of Ruth & Boaz and uses it to make you really think and see the life-altering impacts that Ruth, Boaz, Naomi and Ruth’s kids went through. It’s filled with so much emotion, laughter, tears, and reflective peace that I couldn’t imagine the story ending. It does though, and in such a beautiful way. I never cry (well almost never), but this story, man this story, I was so invested in the characters I could see Ruth’s thoughts I could feel her sadness. I cried for her, I cried imagining myself having to go through that situation and how I might handle it. At times I would laugh out loud or smile and my husband would ask why I told him the same thing I would tell you. You need to read the book to understand why.
Words cannot express how much I hope that each person who reads this post would pick up a copy of How the Light Gets In and read it, then share it to help change the way we look at our daily lives. I give this book a 5 out of 5 stars rating for having depth to the characters, making me think, and making me smile through the tears. You really knocked this one outta the park Jolina Petersheim.
I volunteered to read this book in exchange for my honest review, the thoughts and opinions expressed within are my own.
About How The Light Gets In
From the highly acclaimed author of The Outcast and The Alliance comes an engrossing novel about marriage and motherhood, loss and moving on.
When Ruth Neufeld’s husband and father-in-law are killed working for a relief organization overseas, she travels to Wisconsin with her young daughters and mother-in-law Mabel to bury her husband. She hopes the Mennonite community will be a quiet place to grieve and piece together next steps.
Ruth and her family are welcomed by Elam, her husband’s cousin, who invites them to stay at his cranberry farm through the harvest. Sifting through fields of berries and memories of a marriage that was broken long before her husband died, Ruth finds solace in the beauty of the land and healing through hard work and budding friendship. She also encounters the possibility of new love with Elam, whose gentle encouragement awakens hopes and dreams she thought she’d lost forever.
But an unexpected twist threatens to unseat the happy ending Ruth is about to write for herself. On the precipice of a fresh start and a new marriage, Ruth must make an impossible decision: which path to choose if her husband isn’t dead after all.