book review, Uncategorized

Surround Me by Marguerite Martin Gray: Book Review with Celebrate Lit

Surround Me ebookThese covers, what can I say…they slay me. Perfect for this book.

Blurb

Battles rage in Elizabeth Elliot’s heart as the threat of war invades her hometown.

Charles Town, South Carolina, 1773—The dark curtain of the rumors of revolution threatens to descend as Louis Lestarjette makes a permanent break from his homeland and pursues his relations with Elizabeth. Somehow, he must find a way to manage all aspects of his life amid the political and financial difficulties this turbulent time throws at him. Never has his heart been at the center of his life decisions, challenging what he really wants, if he cannot have it all.

Elizabeth Elliott must find unwavering courage, choosing to allow God’s love to surround her with strength. A marriage during a time of confusion seems impossible as a Patriot from a Loyalist family who loves a Frenchman. She wonders how a faithful daughter can marry without her father’s permission. After a summer apart from Louis, she begins to fear that the uncertain times might delay their life together.surround me 3

Review:

Once again, we find ourselves following along with Louis and Elizabeth. Charles Town is stretching its wings, earning its place as a free colony. The threat of war overshadows every thought and decision. Louis has made his decision: he will support the Sons of Liberty. With Elizabeth by his side, they will trust God to surround them in His mercy.

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The impending doom of war seems just around the corner. While everyone prays for a peaceful solution, they prepare for the worst. Louis is among those willing to defend their town with his very life if it becomes necessary. Louis’s unwavering support showed how much his character has changed through the course of the story. He has gone from thinking only of himself to thinking of the wellbeing of an entire town.

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Elizabeth still holds her place as my favorite character. It does not matter what trial comes her way, her strength might waver for a moment but returns ten times stronger. She is a reminder that God knows every situation. He sees us in every moment. We must trust Him to hold us close and surround us with His love.

As we learned in Hold Me Close Elizabeth’s brother is avidly against her actions. George’s character is once again called upon to force the edge of conflict. The main story revolves around those we have come to love the most: Louis, Elizabeth, Sarah, and Samuel. Now, the last two held a pretty steady spot in Hold Me Close and their story continues in Surround Me.

It was a joy to continue Louis and Elizabeth’s journey. Their engagement is a source of contention between Elizabeth and her father. When that is added together with her staunch support of the Patriots, the rift between father and daughter grows wider. Louis is determined to see the gap closed, to mend the bridge, and achieve the approval of Elizabeth’s father for their marriage.

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Gray always manages to pull in the perfect scriptures for her stories. Louis and Elizabeth constantly remind one another of where their true strength lies. God is our protector and shield. We must depend on Him to surround us with His loving arms. He will hold and protect us, even when life seems to be going against us.

Favorite passage from Surround Me comes during one of the church services.

He states that you must work all things out with ‘fear and trembling.’ Should you live in fear of the demands and uncertainties of life? By no means. God supplies each of us with the promise that He will work each situation out for good. Think of your life and see if that is true. Good comes from every situation, even the worst, if we can rise above our circumstances and view situations from God’s perspective.”

There are times when I want to give up hope. I see the situation we are faced with today, and I want to ask ‘why?’ I want to know what good could possibly come from this trial that has been set before us. All I have to do is read this passage again and remember that God has a plan. I might never see the ‘why’. I might never understand, but that does not mean that He is not working it out for our good. We all must do our part. We must trust, believe, and have faith in God.

I received a copy of this book from the Celebrate Lit team. I was not required to leave a review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Author Bio:         Marguerite Gray

Marguerite Martin Gray is the author of Hold Me Close, Surround Me, and Bring Me Near– Revolutionary Faith Books One, Two and Three. She enjoys studying history and writing fiction. An avid traveler and reader, she teaches high school Spanish and has degrees in French, Spanish, and Journalism from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, and a MA in English from Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, Texas. Marguerite is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, Abilene Writers Guild, Daughters of the American Revolution, South Carolina Historical Society, and Preservation Society of Charleston. She currently lives in North Louisiana with her husband.

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