Sunday, September 17, 2017

A Time to Stand by Robert Whitlow

Genre: Mystery/Suspense
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Released: September 12, 2017
416 pages
About the Book:

Adisa Johnson, a young African-American attorney, is living her dream of practicing law with a prestigious firm in downtown Atlanta. Then a split-second mistake changes the course of her career.

Left with no other options, Adisa returns to her hometown where a few days earlier a white police officer shot an unarmed black teen who is now lying comatose in the hospital.

Adisa is itching to jump into the fight as a special prosecutor, but feels pulled to do what she considers unthinkable—defend the officer.

As the court case unfolds, everyone in the small community must confront their own prejudices. Caught in the middle, Adisa also tries to chart her way along a path complicated by her budding relationship with a charismatic young preacher who leads the local movement demanding the police officer answer for his crime.

This highly relevant and gripping novel challenges us to ask what it means to forgive while seeking justice and to pursue reconciliation while loving others as ourselves.


My Rating & Thoughts:    🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟  (4 stars)
 
“Your biggest job in life is to show God’s unconditional love to a world that desperately needs to see it.” 
 
Mr. Whitlow has written a compelling story that will have you questioning what really happened and wondering what is going to happen. This book felt like it was taken right out of a current day headline. A white police officer shots an unarmed young African-American man and racial tensions arise. Readers are right there with Officer Luke when the shooting happens and we experience everything he goes through at the time. It was easy for me to side with the officer, but then we meet Adisa a young African-American lawyer who has recently returned to town due to her Aunt’s health and gets pulled into this case. After reading the newspaper articles and meeting a few from the African-American community she deems to the white officer guilty, but then she is asked to help defend him. Which side of the case should she be on? Is Officer Luke guilty or not?
 
After being challenged by the Lord, Adisa searches her heart and joins the defense team. Now she is experiencing backlash from the African-American community due to her association with this case. Luke struggles with the whole situation, he is feeling guilty but feels he did what he needed to do at that time; he is scared for his family and is unsure whether or not to trust Adisa. Luke struggles with letting God handle the situation and making what seems impossible to get through possible.
 
Story is told through multiple perspectives which provides readers with the ability to really get to know the characters and feeling for them. Along with the main characters there were some secondary characters I really liked. The aunt, the grandmother and the lawyer each challenged Adisa and made her analyze her thoughts and feelings. Luke’s wife, Jane, was a great prayer warrior and a wonderful support for him. I was a bit disappointed in the way the pastor first reacts to Adisa’s news but he redeemed himself in my eyes when he challenged everyone “It’s time to stand! To look past differences the Lord created and come together in unity of God’s spirit.” Can everyone put racial feelings aside to find the truth of what happened and fight for justice together?
 
This book challenged me as there were times I was back and forth between sides, wanting justice for the young man but didn’t feel the officer was guilty. I loved the way God intervened to give a resolution to a situation that seemed impossible possible. I was pleased with the way the story ended, it felt complete.
 
“Barriers between races weaken in the face of a common purpose
that unites people in a cause bigger than any individual.”
 
(I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson through NetGalley;
opinions expressed in this review are my honest opinion and completely my own.)

  Other Books I've Read by Robert Whitlow:
A House Divided The Choice Jimmy

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