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Review: From Ashes to Honor

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Review: From Ashes to Honor

15 Sep Posted by in Reviews | 1 comment
Review: From Ashes to Honor

From Ashes to Honor (First Responders, Book 1) by Loree Lough
Reviewed by Renee Chaw, Radiant Lit
Genre: Fiction, Contemporary
Publisher: Abingdon Press
Publication Date: September 2011

From Ashes to Honor by Loree LoughSeptember 11, 2011 forever changed the lives of so many Americans, none more so than the first responders and emergency personnel in New York City.

Austin Finley lost his brother and almost lost his career in the rubble of the Twin Towers.

Dr. Mercy Samara sees a never ending stream of police, firemen, and paramedics with post traumatic stress disorder. While she’s able to offer aide, she can’t begin to help herself deal with the own tragic deaths of her mother and father.

When they first meet in New York, neither Mercy nor Austin are prepared for the instant attraction they feel toward one another. They are even more surprised when they find each other years later in Baltimore, Maryland.

With so many things working against them, including Austin’s fear of letting go of the past, and Mercy’s lack of faith, it is hard for either of them to imagine any kind of relationship – even friendship.  As the months pass and the tenth anniversary of 9/11 nears, Austin not only has to release his guilt over his brother’s untimely death, but decide whether or not he can be “unequally yoked” with Mercy.

From Ashes to Honor is a powerful story that will touch many hearts. Both male and female, young and old will want to read this. A greater feel for the plight of emergency responders post-9/11 and also the hope that can be found if one looks hard enough are front and center. Journey through life with Austin, Mercy, Griff, Bud, and Flora on the beautiful harbors of Baltimore, the sterile halls of a hospital room, and the hard-as-nails inner city.

Loree Lough, who has a talent for writing sweet, inspirational romances has definitely taken things to a new level with the start of this new 9/11 series. I went into this expecting to cry and maybe sigh as a romance developed, but this book is so much more than that. I must say that if you are into “fluff” you probably won’t like this, but if you are a fan of a tearjerker plot line and true to life characters…watch out! I was completely shocked and surprised, more so than I have ever been while reading Christian fiction.

This book is in a category by itself. It’s not a romance, it’s not suspense, it’s not a mystery. I almost feel as though it could be a story written by someone who experienced 9/11 from Ground Zero. It was almost perfect. However, some of the dialogue between characters, especially Mercy and her brother Leo, felt as if they didn’t belong in this story. It seemed a bit juvenile and didn’t add a lot to the story. That said, this is still a great, realistic story in a sense that there is no happily ever after and not everything is wrapped up in a tidy bow. I look forward to meeting other First Responders in Honor Redeemed.

Rated: PG-13 – Some violence that may be traumatic for younger readers
**Provided by publisher for review. Thank you!


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