Sunday, March 02, 2008
Book Review: Inklings by Melanie M. Jeschke
I've read very little fiction this past year, not because I don't like it, but because I got hooked on Neil Postman books which led me down other rabbit trails. But in the midst of this l-o-n-g winter I found myself wanting/needing some light reading, and the book Inklings by Melanie M. Jeschke presented itself. I found it a very satisfactory diversion for several reasons.
First, I love C.S. Lewis and although the setting of the story picks up immediately after his death (mid 1960's), his influence and teaching lives on in the life of a young man he mentored (David MacKenzie). I loved the C.S. Lewis quotes sprinkled throughout and the well researched tidbits about his life that were woven into the reading. I also relished walking the Oxford campus and experiencing it vicariously through the eyes of a young American student who was studying there, Kate Hughes. I think my mid-winter doldrums matched the way she sometimes felt as she learned to live with the rainy weather of England!
This was a romance story, and admittedly the plot was not anything out of the ordinary. But there were many elements to enjoy nonetheless: the exhilaration of finding the life partner of God's choosing, the struggles entailed in blending lives from two different cultures, and the issue of pre-marital purity. The author managed to make the commitment to purity appear reasonable and honorable, when it could have just as easily looked prudish and old-fashioned.
I would not hesitate to hand this book to a teenager because it reinforces high standards in a relationship without making it look too easy.
I enjoyed this novel, which was a first for pastor's wife/homeschool Mom Melanie M. Jeschke. In fact, I straightaway ordered the whole trilogy to place on our book table at the upcoming woman's retreat. I tend to put "heavy" books on the table most years, and I think the ladies will enjoy the pages of a sweet, English, C.S. Lewis tinged romance as much as I did.