Book Reviews and Writing Tips

Book Reviews and Writing Tips

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Book Review for The Shunned Man by Thea Nilsson

Interesting look into a man’s life in a cult - 4 stars

This was an interesting book.  Claire, a modern day young woman on summer vacation, finds a badly beaten man, Sepp, in the ditch.  Even though he’s a stranger Claire believes his story about why he was shunned and left on the roadside to die.  She takes him home and nurses him back to health.  As the days go by, a romantic relationship forms between the two of them.  They are from two entirely different worlds and it’s entertaining to read how Sepp, who was raised in an isolated religious community, tries to adapt to modern day life.  He’s quite confused most of the time but tries to stay open minded and does his best to make a place for himself in the modern world.

But this is more than just a light romantic read.  It’s a look inside of a Mennonite-type community who believes in the simple life.  When Sepp is shunned, never to return to Heinz Hollow, we wonder why the leader and his wife have set him up.  Was he getting to close to finding out what was really going on when he started asking questions?  With Claire’s help, Sepp finds others who have left the religious community and together the group steps in to help when they discover corruption in Heinz Hollow. 

As the story unfolds, Sepp is amazed at the dishonesty of the leaders and a couple of the townspeople who won’t stop at anything to get their way.  Underlying evil threatens the community and Sepp risks his life to go back there to warn his friends and neighbors whose lives are in danger.

The situations and characters are believable in this well written story.

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