|2.0 out of 5 stars -- A test of faith. A HUGE test.|
OK this woman had it so much worse than Job of the Bible. At first it was hard to see her go through the tragedies, but then it got to be WAY TOO MUCH. I often get suckered in to requesting a book based on the synopsis, but sometimes the actual story is nothing like what was written in the publicity materials. As it is here.
I thought this novel was going to be about a woman Pope. NOT. So ignore the blurb. This is about a woman doctor, a humanitarian from KIND HANDS (an NGO), who goes to South Sudan to a hospital outpost to care for the victims injured in a bloody civil war there. The tide of hopelessness overwhelms the workers and all the intentions to do good works is futile in the face of murderous outlaw gangs, marauders, and the Gray Army. This militia has only one objective -- to kill everyone. Dr. Brigid Fitzgerald is dedicated and fiercely protective of her patients and her colleagues. But she is no match for the Gray Army leader, Colonel Dage Zuberi -- the king of atrocities. Death and more deaths...
In between her stints at the outpost hospital in Sudan, Brigid deals with personal relationships, love and marriage. She has trials and more trials as she questions her faith in God and her religion. She has visions. She and her husband start a church that is an offshoot of Roman Catholicism and they become the targets of some powerful enemies, including those in the hierarchy of the church. She becomes one of the first female "priests" and that causes further problems. Will her adversaries get the best of her as at each point her faith is tested?
I was totally disappointed in this novel and don't recommend it. Sure it's interesting for me as a Catholic to imagine a female priest and possible Pope, but despite the religious overtones, the novel never fulfilled my expectations. I felt let down by the continual drama and bad luck for Brigid. I never really connected with her character. Her "visions" left me in a state of disbelief. I had to struggle through to the end and deal with my disappointment of let down expectations. I rarely read Patterson anymore, and now, again, I know why.
Thank you to Little, Brown and Company and Edelweiss for the e-book ARC to review.