Liz Curtis Higgs has been a favorite author for both Les and me ever since her Bad Girls of the Bible days. I met her at a book signing event and told her that Les had been reading Bad Girls on our vacation and ended up giving it to the breakfast hostess at the hotel because she was so curious about it. I even had her sign her book for Les, probably the only man she had inscribed a book for all day.
So when WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group offered me a free copy of Higgs’ book Mine Is the Night to review, I couldn’t resist. Mine is the Night is a continuation of the story begun in Here Burns My Candle. It is the story of the biblical book of Ruth transported to the Scottish borderlands of the 1740s. A leap, I know, but well done. Maybe a pastor’s wife shouldn’t say this, but I’m not normally much of one for retelling of biblical stories because I know how they end. But when a story is translated into such a different place and time, I can totally get into it.
Higgs is a master story teller, creating characters that you love or hate and who surprise you. The scenes are richly painted and the tension is taut enough to keep you walking the tightrope to discover the resolution. Being the detail freak that I am, I love that Higgs includes a map of the town so I can follow the movements of the characters. The faith of the characters and the poetic quotes that start each chapter minister to my soul and stir my spirit. I don’t expect a third installment of this series since the book of Ruth is complete, but I can’t help missing Elisabeth and Marjory and the handsome Lord Jack.
I am doing better about getting rid of books once I’ve read them, but this isn’t one of those. This book is a keeper, and after Les finishes reading it, it will receive pride of place in one of the glass-fronted bookcases in our library (the room that’s supposed to be the formal dining room in this house).
It’s often hard for me to part with books because I become so invested in the characters (like those in Mine Is the Night), but I am finally recognizing that I can keep every book I read. I’ve been giving mine to the Ephrata Public Library. Budgets have been cut drastically for our state libraries (I’m guessing for yours too), so donations are always welcome. And if they can’t use them for the shelves, they can always sell them in the bookshop or at the yearly book sale.
What do you do with books you no longer want or simply don’t have the place to store?