Redemption is Never Easy

Welcome to Wednesday’s Blue Light Special. How about a book today? Let’s talk about Ripple by E. L. Farris. First, I’ll tell you a little about the author. Second, I’ll give you a synopsis of the book. Third, I’ll tell you what I thought of the book. Sound fair?

Let’s do it.

Meet E. L. Farris (El)

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E.L. Farris, a born-again Christian, ex-lawyer, runner, and married mother of three children, resides near Washington, D.C. She is also the author of I Run: Running from Hell with El.

About Ripple

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Synopsis:

When high-powered attorney Helen Thompson discovers that her fifteen-year old daughter has been sexually assaulted, she takes drastic measures.

Finding herself in trouble, Helen must relinquish control and put her faith in a process she knows to be flawed. As a team of lawyers, therapists and women from a safe house help Helen and Phoebe find hope and healing, a sociopath lurks, waiting for his moment to strike.

A lyrical, dark fairytale that will resonate with fans of women’s literature and psychological thrillers, RIPPLE delves into the nature of evil, without seeking to provide final answers to the issue of what makes a human commit evil acts. And while the author takes readers to scary places, she ultimately shines a light on the human condition and celebrates the triumph of the human spirit in the face of great tribulation.

My Review

I met El Farris on Facebook. Her blog post teasers always looked interesting. Not long after I discovered El’s blog, she released her book, Ripple. Because El’s blog is so well written and because she is obviously intelligent and compassionate, I knew this would be a good book. I was not prepared for how it sucked me in and wouldn’t let me stop reading, even when reading this beautiful novel hurt my heart.

Ripple is the story of Helen and Phoebe Thompson, a mother and daughter whose lives are turned upside down after Helen learns Phoebe’s father has been molesting her. Worse, this man has promised some of his cronies the privilege of raping his daughter.

Helen and Phoebe go into hiding at a safe house for abused women while police search for members of Phoebe’s father’s sex ring. It becomes clear one of these predators knows exactly where Phoebe and Helen are and still has plans to hurt Phoebe. This creates an element of danger and suspense in Ripple.

I’m going to be very honest right now. At times, this is a very hard book to read. It’s about a horrifying topic. But the themes of hope and redemption make this novel something worth reading.

Helen Thompson is a wife and mother who is really married to her demanding, competitive career as an attorney. When she realizes her focus on her career blinded her to her husband’s abuse of their daughter, she is overwrought with guilt.  To atone, Helen must change everything about her life and accept that things will never be the same again.

Phoebe Thompson is a child of fifteen lost in a sea of madness where the grownups don’t do what they’re supposed to do. Her father–a judge who is respected and revered in their social circle–has broken the worst of taboos. Her mother–successful, intelligent, tough–never saw what was really going on. Her journey in this book is about her accepting that she is okay and worthwhile and can go on to enjoy life.

Both Phoebe and Helen’s struggles are heartbreaking at times, but seeing them change is life affirming.

The secondary characters in Ripple are well-drawn, each having a complicated backstory that I wanted to know more about. My heart broke for some of these characters, and I was outraged at how others were treated.

Skillfully woven into this novel is a discourse on healing. Some people run to heal. Some people ride horses to heal. Some people help others heal, and, in doing so, heal themselves. That was what made me so glad I read this book. It had a strong message encouraging readers to do whatever it takes to make things right. And that’s important.

That’s all I’ve got to say. El will be around throughout the day to answer any questions about Ripple, running, or just to talk about life in general. 

Ready to buy?

You can find Ripple at Amazon.com. Click here to go straight to it.

Find El Online

Running From Hell with El on Facebook

Running from Hell with El on Twitter

Running from Hell with El: The Blog