Book Review: Thunder And Rain

23 Aug

Third generation Texas Ranger Tyler Steele is the last of a dying breed— a modern day cowboy hero living in a world that doesn’t quite understand his powerful sense of right and wrong and instinct to defend those who can’t defend themselves. Despite his strong moral compass, Ty has trouble seeing his greatest weakness. His hard outer shell, the one essential to his work, made him incapable of forging the emotional connection his wife Andie so desperately needed.

Now retired, raising their son Brodie on his own, and at risk of losing his ranch, Ty does not know how to rebuild from the rubble of his life. The answer comes in the form of Samantha and her daughter Hope, on the run from a seemingly inescapable situation. They are in danger, desperate, and alone. Though they are strangers, Ty knows he can help— protecting the innocent is what he does best. As his relationship with Sam and Hope unfolds, Ty realizes he must confront his true weaknesses if he wants to become the man he needs to be.

Excerpt

 

From Charles Martin’s website:

I used to put a long list of all my great and varied accomplishments right here in this space (In truth, it was rather short.) hoping it made me look important. Now that I’m forty, I’m not sure I see the value. Yes, I have a few degrees and I worked hard to get here, but saying all that reminds me of the story of the guy who walked barefoot, backwards, through the snow, uphill both ways, carrying his horse…to school. (I’m scratching my head.)

Here’s some of the stuff that matters.

Christy and I married in 1993. If you include dating, I’ve known and loved her for more than half my life. She is and always will be the home for my heart. We have three boys. Charlie, John T. and Rives. They range from 12 to 7. Folks often ask me, which of my books do I like the best. You might as well line up my sons and ask me who I love the most.

My hobbies are bow hunting, working out (a blend of old school stuff and martial arts, called Fight Fit) and Tae Kwon Do. Currently, I’m a blue belt and I’m the least flexible person you’ve ever met. The guy that trains me, laughs everytime I start warming up. My boys are far better at Tae Kwon Do than I but I doubt they have as much fun – I get to do and watch. They just do.

I also like to write, but that’s another story.

 

My Impressions:

Charles Martin is an excellent author who makes a reader not only think, but feel. In his latest novel, Thunder and Rain, Martin brings us into the black and white world of retired Texas Ranger, Tyler Steele. Tyler views the world in terms of absolutes — right and wrong, good and evil.  His decisions and motives are determined by his outlook on the world. When he literally runs into a young woman and her child on the interstate, Tyler begins a journey that will test his beliefs in absolutes and will make him rethink just what his position is in the world.

The story is narrated by Tyler. His west Texas accent and values soon become very apparent. The rest of the story is told through journal entries addressed to God by 10 year old Hope. The two points of view bring an authenticity to the story and place the reader in the thoughts and actions of the characters. And all the characters are well-developed.  They are flawed and struggling and became very real to this reader. And while the subject matter is at times heavy (child molestation, addiction, gun violence), Martin introduces enough wry humor and warm relationships to create a good balance.

Overall, I liked this book very much. I did kind of glaze over during a handgun safety class scene, but I know my husband would have loved that part! So if you like Charles Martin’s novels, be sure to pick up Thunder And Rain.  And if you have not had the pleasure of reading his books, this one is good place to start.

Recommended.

 

(I received Thunder And Rain from the DeMoss group in return for an honest review.  The opinions expressed are mine alone.)

 

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