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Reviewed by Carine Engelbrecht for Readers' Favorite
Andrew Murray is regarded as one of the most iconic church leaders in South Africa's Afrikaner community and the book, Andrew Murray: Destined to Win by Olea Nel, shares a chapter of his life. As an eager young pastor, he takes on the strenuous duty of serving the entire Orange Free State community, often travelling many miles to preside over weddings and baptisms in the wide spread community, while preaching regularly to both the English and Boer congregations of the area. It puts him at the forefront of the volatile politics of the early to mid-1850s, but takes a toll on his health. Although it is easy to preach God's love to his flock, he faces an internal struggle when it comes to finding and expressing that same selfless love from within himself to woo the lady who stole his heart.
Andrew Murray: Destined to Win by Olea Nel shares a slice of South African history as seen through the eyes of a man reckoned to be one of its foremost church leaders. Murray's dual Scottish and Boer heritage places him in a unique position where he is able to empathize with conflicting viewpoints in a volatile community and play a conciliatory role. The book provides a satisfying read for those with an interest in South Africa's pioneering years in the 19th century, as it offers a multi-faceted, well-researched and authentic portrait of the local politics between Boer, Brit, and Basuto of the time. There is a detailed glossary of Afrikaans terms at the back, as well as a bibliography and several maps. As a well-written biographical novel, it is recommended for readers of historical fiction. While it is set against a Christian background, it is not necessarily a book that preaches to its reader. This book is the sequel to Andrew Murray: Destined to Serve.