A Path to Forgiveness

The Prodigal Woman Series

Christian - Fantasy/Sci-Fi
265 Pages
Reviewed on 11/04/2021
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Joanne Ang for Readers' Favorite

A Path to Forgiveness is a dystopian fantasy novel written by Lisa M. James, penned for young adult and adult readers. A Path to Forgiveness begins with a young woman named Esther. Growing up in a bountiful environment, she learned to spend lavishly until her gambling husband put the whole family into severe debt. With a risk of being enslaved, Esther needs to find a way to escape her dire situation to give her son a chance in life. Another orphan named Levi had his future set out, but plans were forgotten when his first wife and unborn daughter died from childbirth complications. A memory, a promise, a duty that linked both Esther and Levi led to a hasty marriage, but will that be enough to sustain the pair to live a life of debt and shortcomings? Or will the raging war spell the end of this desperate family?

A Path to Forgiveness is truly unlike any other novel I have read. The portrayal of guilt, betrayal, and love was so intense I could not peel my eyes away from the pages! I loved how humble Esther was. Despite her unfortunate circumstances, she was quick to realize the blessings in her life. I also loved the mix of coldness and warmth portrayed by Levi, a blend of guilt and glee through Esther and Kaleb. Kaleb was also a joy to read, bringing a little bit of childish euphoria to the story. I have to admit, I am a real sucker for a good romance novel, and Lisa M. James really did it for me! Truly an admirable romantic novel that will fill you with humbleness and forgiveness.

K.C. Finn

A Path to Forgiveness is a work of fiction in the Christian fantasy and interpersonal drama subgenres and was penned by author Lisa M. James. Part of the Prodigal Woman Series, the work is intended for an adult audience but contains no graphic or extreme content. The story focuses on Esther and the road to ruin which leaves her and her son destitute. Cursed by her own recklessness in the past, Esther must marry Levi in order to provide stability for herself and her son. Levi, honor-bound to take Esther in marriage, struggles with their reunion but feels a powerful yearning to become the father and husband he knows he can grow into.

Author Lisa M. James has hit on a really fascinating and dramatic dynamic with this truly exciting novel of relationships, romances, and reflecting on one’s own demons. The strongest element of the story is certainly in its character building, which sets up Esther and Levi as real people with opposing views on a great many things in the world. With such strong personas at play, the clash they create is electric and exciting to read about, propelling the story from one dramatic circumstance to another with emotionally charged dialogue and plenty of secrets and heartaches revealed along the way. The novel takes readers deep into Esther’s past and present especially, and this journey will leave your heart full to the brim once you see its completion, with Levi compelled to be at her side. Overall, I would certainly recommend A Path to Forgiveness for fans of emotive fantasy drama novels with a strong Christian morality at their root.

Joy Hannabass

While Esther came from a rather wealthy family and talked her father out of her inheritance, it does her little good after she and her husband squander it all on their reckless and extravagant living. Now that her husband has disappeared, Esther is alone with a son to raise, no money, in debtors prison for the debts her husband left behind and feeling hopeless. Her only choice is to enslave herself and her son in order to stay alive. That is until Levi gets word and acts on a promise he made to Esther's father on his death bed. Yet the last thing Levi wants to do is marry Esther and have her and her son living with him. What will people think of him bringing home a new bride he has never mentioned?

A Path to Forgiveness by Lisa M. James is a prodigal come home story, with Esther's life just as the prodigal son's story in the Bible. Lisa M. James writes a wonderful story of love, forgiveness, and second chances. The characters are so well thought out and created and brought to life as they develop throughout the story. I like the way James digs deep into the lives of her characters, especially Esther and Levi. Levi was an extraordinary man that Esther didn't deserve, but as the story unfolds, my respect for Esther grew. I did feel sorry for her, with her son to raise and the enormous debt to pay. There are some twists and turns in the story that keep you guessing, and I found it difficult to stop reading until the very end. There is a bit of fantasy running throughout the plot which I very much enjoyed, and I feel makes it even more interesting. A Path to Forgiveness is an awesome read. If you enjoy Christian fiction with fantasy mixed in the works, you will love this one.