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Healing Stones

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With one flash of a camera, Demi's private life becomes public news. She doesn't know it yet, but her healing has just begun. Christian college professor Demitria Costanas had vowed to end her affair with a colleague. But she gives into temptation one last time...and a lurking photographer captures her weakness for all to see. Quite literally, she's the woman caught in With one flash of a camera, Demi's private life becomes public news. She doesn't know it yet, but her healing has just begun. Christian college professor Demitria Costanas had vowed to end her affair with a colleague. But she gives into temptation one last time...and a lurking photographer captures her weakness for all to see. Quite literally, she's the woman caught in adultery. And almost everyone--herself included--has a stone to throw. Enter Sullivan Crisp, a decidedly unorthodox psychologist with his own baggage. He's well-known for his quirky sense of humor and incorporation of "game show" theology into his counseling sessions. And yet there's something more he offers...hope for a fresh start. Reluctantly the two of them begin an uplifting, uneven journey filled with healing and grace. By turns funny and touching, this story explores the ways humans hurt each other and deceive themselves. And it shows the endlessly creative means God uses to turn stones of accusation and shame into works of beauty that lead us onto the path of healing. An auspicious debut for a candid yet tender series about pain, healing, and God's invitation for second chances.


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With one flash of a camera, Demi's private life becomes public news. She doesn't know it yet, but her healing has just begun. Christian college professor Demitria Costanas had vowed to end her affair with a colleague. But she gives into temptation one last time...and a lurking photographer captures her weakness for all to see. Quite literally, she's the woman caught in With one flash of a camera, Demi's private life becomes public news. She doesn't know it yet, but her healing has just begun. Christian college professor Demitria Costanas had vowed to end her affair with a colleague. But she gives into temptation one last time...and a lurking photographer captures her weakness for all to see. Quite literally, she's the woman caught in adultery. And almost everyone--herself included--has a stone to throw. Enter Sullivan Crisp, a decidedly unorthodox psychologist with his own baggage. He's well-known for his quirky sense of humor and incorporation of "game show" theology into his counseling sessions. And yet there's something more he offers...hope for a fresh start. Reluctantly the two of them begin an uplifting, uneven journey filled with healing and grace. By turns funny and touching, this story explores the ways humans hurt each other and deceive themselves. And it shows the endlessly creative means God uses to turn stones of accusation and shame into works of beauty that lead us onto the path of healing. An auspicious debut for a candid yet tender series about pain, healing, and God's invitation for second chances.

30 review for Healing Stones

  1. 4 out of 5

    Mike (the Paladin)

    I have now read 2 of this trilogy(?) and plan to read the third. I have a bit to say here and much of it will be true of both the books I've (so far) read. I do intend to read the third. First this book deals with some good, interesting and valuable topics. Christians who read this (these) will have their mind shifted into gear (if they allow it) concerning the story we are dropped into here. So what's that story? A Christian woman (our protagonist though the trilogy is about Sullivan (Sully) I have now read 2 of this trilogy(?) and plan to read the third. I have a bit to say here and much of it will be true of both the books I've (so far) read. I do intend to read the third. First this book deals with some good, interesting and valuable topics. Christians who read this (these) will have their mind shifted into gear (if they allow it) concerning the story we are dropped into here. So what's that story? A Christian woman (our protagonist though the trilogy is about Sullivan (Sully) Crisp) is and has been for the past five months (before the book opens) caught up in an extra-martial affair. She is wracked with guilt but also caught in a strong even "enslaving" passion. She is on her way (as the book opens) for one last meeting with her lover intent on breaking things off and trying to save her marriage. BUT during the meeting she is "overwhelmed" and falls into her lover's arms, only to have flashes of light tell her that they are being photographed. She breaks away knocking over a candle as she does, and runs into the night pulling her clothes together and throwing her "under-things" into the water. Her life falls apart when these photos go to her husband and certain members of the board of the Christian college where she teaches. There are ideas discussed and "lived out" in the book that I'd like to have the chance to discuss with others who have read the book...or even the writers. I can recommend this book (and the next, though we'll deal with it separately). Now that was the molasses, now let me give you the "small amount" of sulfur. Not to be sexist but this (these) will I believe appeal more to women than to men. As I read them I remembered a complaint we used to hear a few years ago (and still hear sometimes) that in books, movie, TV women were "objectified". Well in these books men are largely objectified. Other than Dr. Crisp there isn't really a decent man in the entire book (and in the next this is even more so). The male characters aren't deep, as a matter of fact they are pretty much cookie cutter stereotypes. There are several fully formed women and Dr. Crisp is taking shape, but the males are just manikins or simple automatons used to fill in a part. Be ready for that. If you read this simply as a novel ignoring all the Christian angles (and even insights) then it is very much what I suppose would be called a "woman's read". Yes I know, there are women who prefer action oriented books and there are men who like romances...but these aren't actually the commonality. I'm really not trying to be sexist, just informative. BUT as I said for men or women who are looking for good discussions on Christian topics then I can recommend it. Just suck it up guys and try not to be any of the creeps depicted in the books, LOL. By the way, my usual admonition, don't get your theology from novels...but you can get insights from them.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Bethany

    What do you do when you're at the lowest of the low points, suffering the most painful thing you could imagine, losing the most precious things you have, and know that it's because YOU made the biggest mistake of your life?? And then what happens when you have to go on? Because life doesn't just end there... And you have to live with yourself? When no one else will? Healing Stones tells the story of a woman caught in adultery... (yikes) ...and her path to healing. There were so many things I loved What do you do when you're at the lowest of the low points, suffering the most painful thing you could imagine, losing the most precious things you have, and know that it's because YOU made the biggest mistake of your life?? And then what happens when you have to go on? Because life doesn't just end there... And you have to live with yourself? When no one else will? Healing Stones tells the story of a woman caught in adultery... (yikes) ...and her path to healing. There were so many things I loved about this. First, I tried to read without thinking I would end up loving the book just because I love a lot of what the co-author (Stephen Arterburn) has already done. That was taken care of when I just fell in love with the book itself. It was so well written (Great job Nancy Rue too!) and the issues in it so sensitively handled that I didn't have any of the terrible effects of not-so-great christian writing befall me. (For me that would be apathy, cynicism, frustration, that all-too-well-known feeling of 'Yeah, Right'(insert eye-roll here), or sometimes simply gagging up the spoon that I feel being shoved down my throat.) I think we could all agree that there are lots of books out there in the "christian lifestyle/culture" genre --I think I made that up-- that are good examples of what it's NOT like to live out a life of faith in the real world. Second, I didn't really realize it was a mystery because the authors didn't try to do that whole sneaky "I'm going to fool the reader" thing that you always get when you read mysteries. You see, I'm the kind of girl who never EVER tries to guess to figure out who did it. For two reasons: I'm so aware of the twist thing that always happens and I know at some point someone is going to try to fool me... And I don't want to give anyone that satisfaction so I just don't. AND because I like to be genuinely surprised when the detective (or whoever) figures it out at the same time I do. For one of the first times I found myself being sneaky with the book and 'guessing' at the end result and I was right! It was a good feeling. A free feeling. An "I don't have to protect myself from the sneaky author" kind of feeling. And interesting, because I don't usually get to feel that way. The biggest deal with this book, though, is what it teaches. That God is good, that suffering is real, that the pain that mistakes bring you is part of the path to healing, that grace and forgiveness is life-changing and earth-shatteringly fundamental to the Christian life. And that's not JUST for yourself or JUST for others. :) It's a good one. Definitely 5 stars for book content and great writing. I feel like it's a book of life wisdom, and something I'll re-read one day.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Nancy DeValve

    Demitria is involved in an extra-marital affair with another professor at the Christian college where they teach. On the night she goes to break off the affair, they are caught on camera in a very passionate moment. The pictures end up in the hands of the president and of a major donor of the college as well as with Demi's husband. Understandably this leads to her resignation from the college and the collapse of her marriage. She begins seeing a counselor who is dealing with his own pain. His is Demitria is involved in an extra-marital affair with another professor at the Christian college where they teach. On the night she goes to break off the affair, they are caught on camera in a very passionate moment. The pictures end up in the hands of the president and of a major donor of the college as well as with Demi's husband. Understandably this leads to her resignation from the college and the collapse of her marriage. She begins seeing a counselor who is dealing with his own pain. His is kind of a second story going on, totally unrelated to and unknown by Demi. The story is mostly realistic. It takes us into a deeper level of exploring why she would throw away everything for this affair. What is happening in her family that caused this distance between herself and her husband? Perhaps more importantly, what is happening within herself that has contributed to the problems? Can any of these problems be resolved? Is there any way to achieve forgiveness and restoration when relationships are broken? Who is really qualified to throw the first stone? There were a few things I didn't like. The ding-ding-ding business in therapy was annoying. I got a little tired of some of the character's nick names. And perhaps most annoying was that even though the book seemed realistic, at the end the bad guys were all disposed of a little too neatly. I wavered between giving the book a three or a four. The fact that I stayed awake way past my bedtime every night just to read a few pages more made me give the book a four-star rating.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    ABOUT THE BOOK With one flash of a camera, Demi's private life becomes public news. She doesn't know it yet, but her healing has just begun. Christian college professor Demitria Costanas had vowed to end her affair with a colleague. But she gives into temptation one last time...and a lurking photographer captures her weakness for all to see. Quite literally, she's the woman caught in adultery. And almost everyone--herself included--has a stone to throw. Enter Sullivan Crisp, a decidedly unorthodox ABOUT THE BOOK With one flash of a camera, Demi's private life becomes public news. She doesn't know it yet, but her healing has just begun. Christian college professor Demitria Costanas had vowed to end her affair with a colleague. But she gives into temptation one last time...and a lurking photographer captures her weakness for all to see. Quite literally, she's the woman caught in adultery. And almost everyone--herself included--has a stone to throw. Enter Sullivan Crisp, a decidedly unorthodox psychologist with his own baggage. He's well-known for his quirky sense of humor and incorporation of "game show" theology into his counseling sessions. And yet there's something more he offers...hope for a fresh start. Reluctantly the two of them begin an uplifting, uneven journey filled with healing and grace. By turns funny and touching, this story explores the ways humans hurt each other and deceive themselves. And it shows the endlessly creative means God uses to turn stones of accusation and shame into works of beauty that lead us onto the path of healing. An auspicious debut for a candid yet tender series about pain, healing, and God's invitation for second chances. My review: I'd never heard of this book before it landed in my mailbox, but I've loved every book I've read that was written by Nancy Rue because she usually writes pretty edgy stuff. I started reading this novel for the blog tour and I was not disappointed. I literally couldn't put it down. It captivated me from the first page! I stayed up late at night reading it and took it with me to read every chance I got. The characters were rich and the emotions were real. The story within the story, about the therapist Dr. Sullivan Crisp, was impressively heartbreaking and emotionally moving. I was totally caught up in the emotion and the trauma in the characters' lives. I cried several times. And the ending was so powerful it left me speechless. The authors did a fantastic job at torturing their characters, but better than that, they did an incredible job of showing you the healing that took place in their lives. That is not easy to do, not like creating the pain is, anyway. You--the reader--see the benefits of not running from the pain and of learning to understand yourself and your own heart so you can truly be vulnerable and love others. Forgiveness is a strong theme in this book. So is spiritual pharisee-ism and judgmental attitudes and the pain they cause. I gained so much insight into my own life through the spiritual struggles of the characters that I can't recommend this novel highly enough. I loved it! Healing Stones was published by Thomas Nelson and was released January 1, 2008.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Janis

    Excellent book... I'm hoping it will be the beginning of a fantastic series. Honest, hopeful, beautifully written... a woman caught in adultery who loses her job, family, home, self-respect, and gains a new understanding of Jesus, who changes everything, who heals and redeems in ways she didn't dream possible. Shows the importance of wise Christian counselling (perceiving our truth in the light of God's truth) versus the danger of uneducated Christian counselling (as in pray harder, have more Excellent book... I'm hoping it will be the beginning of a fantastic series. Honest, hopeful, beautifully written... a woman caught in adultery who loses her job, family, home, self-respect, and gains a new understanding of Jesus, who changes everything, who heals and redeems in ways she didn't dream possible. Shows the importance of wise Christian counselling (perceiving our truth in the light of God's truth) versus the danger of uneducated Christian counselling (as in pray harder, have more faith and everything will be magically healed)... with a bit of mystery thrown in... the dangers of legalism and the beauty and mystery of grace... wonderful, inspiring novel!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Renada Thompson

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Totally engrossing novel that made me want to go deeper in my own story with a mentor/counselor. A few quibbles that keep this from five stars: 1) so many plot lines made it hard to follow, 2) Zach being such a heinous character made Demi seem like she was in the hands of a criminal mastermind, 3) fire ending was a bit too convenient both for a suicidal Zach and reconciling Rich and Demi. That said, the book left me without greater compassion for myself and others crippled by shame.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Janeen

    I think that author(s) have jumped into the conflict a little too quickly and nothing really developed. The plot dragged on for the rest of the book, and nothing substantial happened until the very end.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Emilie S

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. First sentence: *I sneaked down to the boat that night to say this couldn't happen anymore.* Highly recommend this book! I picked up a few of Nancy Rue's books at the thrift store and was hooked. She's my favorite Christian authoress now. This series is a great collaboration with Stephen Arterburn. As a young single woman, what I took away from this book is a healthy reminder of how truly serious a thing the marriage vows are before God...and your spouse. God placed parameters on marriage for a First sentence: *I sneaked down to the boat that night to say this couldn't happen anymore.* Highly recommend this book! I picked up a few of Nancy Rue's books at the thrift store and was hooked. She's my favorite Christian authoress now. This series is a great collaboration with Stephen Arterburn. As a young single woman, what I took away from this book is a healthy reminder of how truly serious a thing the marriage vows are before God...and your spouse. God placed parameters on marriage for a reason, to keep either spouse (or/and their children) from having to go through such physical, emotional and spiritual turmoil. And the long painful road to reconciliation and forgiveness it holds. This book covers that process in a mature, realistic and Godly approach that inspires and showcases grace in a vivid and beautiful way. I admit I also found it interesting that this book has a wife's infidelity and journey to forgiveness, since a large number of Christian books feature a husbands infidelity instead. Good to address this circumstance as well. The first few chapters are rough to read, as they follow the initial emotions and reactions main character Demi, her family, and coworkers go through in response to her affair. Then you get to the good part, the beginning of change and awesome glimmers of hope and grace. The psychologist Sullivan's wise and gentle counsel with Demi is almost like sitting in on a therapy session for a friend. It's riveting, deep, thought provoking and emotional. These are real and proven tactics for reaching out to people in crisis, and including the Biblical aspects brings it to another level of gravity and hope without ever feeling "preachy". It takes time, and I like how, while the story flows quickly along, time passes for the characters, so Demi's reconciliation with God and her family is believable and transforming. It has many great moments that lend a lighthearted hand to such a serious story so that you never feel as though you are drowning in emotion. And there is a great deal of emotion. Besides Demi's marriage troubles, there is a young pregnant woman with a very unsupportive family, Demi's disrespectful teen age son and shy daughter, Demi's mentality unstable ex boyfriend Zach who has a vengeance fueled elaborate plan on the Christian college they both worked at, the college itself having disagreements among the faculty on changing the message of the Bible to fit with the times, and of course, poor Sullivan's tragic life story that God has shone His light on to keep him going, and stay faithful. Each is tremendously interesting and encouraging and challenging in its own way. Nancy Rue does not forget side characters in her stories, which is one of my favorite things about her books. The side stories never take away from the plot, they weave in and out and add so much to it! Getting to know each side character as they interact with the main characters truly deepens the relationships, and story itself, in a way that feels incredibly realistic. It reminds you that everyone you meet has a history, has a soul and has a life they are living, whether it be good or bad, and a lot of times your paths cross for a reason. Healing Stones is mostly written in Demi's first person point of view, with portions focusing on Sullivan's point of view being in third person. It is smoothly transitioned and very well done in both cases. It is over 380 pages long, so a decent sized novel. Excellent book, so glad I took a chance on it! And look into book two and three in this series, both are equally as good!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Sonia Schoenfield

    I couldn't put this book down. This is the kind of Christian fiction I love, real people dealing with real issues in the light of God's mercy and grace. Struggling with who they are in Him and how to live out their lives, broken, mended, forgiven. The book had almost too many issues, but the story still held together. The characters were real, the writing was fast-paced. There was a lot of discovery going on, making the book a mystery as well as spiritually fulfilling. I wish I could give this I couldn't put this book down. This is the kind of Christian fiction I love, real people dealing with real issues in the light of God's mercy and grace. Struggling with who they are in Him and how to live out their lives, broken, mended, forgiven. The book had almost too many issues, but the story still held together. The characters were real, the writing was fast-paced. There was a lot of discovery going on, making the book a mystery as well as spiritually fulfilling. I wish I could give this book five stars but I there was one character that was too over the top. I'm going to read the other books in this series, though. I want to follow Sullivan Crisp on his own journey of healing.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    My rating could have been a four star. I wavered and chose three as explained below. As a Christian I firmly believe in forgiveness. This book is ALL about that subject. I felt the story was well-written for the most part, however, there were times when the reader is privy to the inner thoughts of a character and those sections tended to be a bit murky, which slowed down the flow of the story. That is why I didn't give the book a rating of four stars. Maybe it deserved four stars because I My rating could have been a four star. I wavered and chose three as explained below. As a Christian I firmly believe in forgiveness. This book is ALL about that subject. I felt the story was well-written for the most part, however, there were times when the reader is privy to the inner thoughts of a character and those sections tended to be a bit murky, which slowed down the flow of the story. That is why I didn't give the book a rating of four stars. Maybe it deserved four stars because I couldn't put the book down because I cared about the main character.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    This book was difficult to read, not because it was poorly written (it wasnt), but because most of it was very real. A great book showing us how we blame ourselves, dont communicate well in many instances, judgement, and what forgiveness not only means, but what it takes to forgive both others and ourselves. The drawback for me was how the end mostly tied up everything with a pretty little bow; that was not particularly a realistic portrayal of what most likely would happen if this were a true This book was difficult to read, not because it was poorly written (it wasn’t), but because most of it was very real. A great book showing us how we blame ourselves, don’t communicate well in many instances, judgement, and what forgiveness not only means, but what it takes to forgive both others and ourselves. The drawback for me was how the end mostly tied up everything with a pretty little bow; that was not particularly a realistic portrayal of what most likely would happen if this were a true to life situation imo.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Vicki Shelton

    I listened to the audio version of the 2nd book (Healing Waters) before reading Healing Stones. I disliked the reader so much that I wouldnt have recommended it to anyone. But, out of curiosity, (to see if it was the reader or the story itself), I decided to read book 1. And I enjoyed it quite a lot. If you like to watch characters engage in spiritual struggles with life events and poor choices, youll love it. I listened to the audio version of the 2nd book (Healing Waters) before reading Healing Stones. I disliked the reader so much that I wouldn’t have recommended it to anyone. But, out of curiosity, (to see if it was the reader or the story itself), I decided to read book 1. And I enjoyed it quite a lot. If you like to watch characters engage in spiritual struggles with life events and poor choices, you’ll love it.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Michelle Le Gallais

    a few twists and turns.. the 'inside' remarks would be great in a room face to face, but hard to pick up in the context of the read... i.e. a person's own name for someone. Great read though and liked the climax ending. Well done.. Onto book 2 !

  14. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    Can infidelity ever bring about good in a marriage? can the spouse who was unfaithful ever forgive themselves? Struggling through infidelity Demetrea must face what she has fone to her husbwnd anf children as well as the Christian college she teaches at.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Hamilton

    Rue & Arterburn do a wonderful job of intertwining emotional health and story beautifully. Love the character building, suspense elements, and story line. Great read. Reading it again now!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Nelia

    Nancy Rue and Stephen Arterburn are an excellent team. Their stories contain so much wisdom that the reader feels as if he/she has just benefited from a personal counseling session.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Natalie Ott

    An inspiring story of redemption. I enjoyed the debunking of religion and really inspiring to have a true transformation in Christ and loving all in his name, flaws in all, including ourselves.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Charlene

    It was an interesting story filled with Christians with frailties. I wanted to know how things worked out but in the end I felt the solutions were too pat.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Missy

    What happens when your sins find you out? Good story, forgiveness and mercy is the theme. I may buy #2.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Averil Pesce

    Wow! Such an amazing read! My take away from this book is forgiveness! It is such a struggle to forgive ourselves and others. So if this is a struggle for you, this is a must read!! This book speaks of sin, loss, anger, self loathing and ultimately forgiveness from God and ourselves. There is no sin too great of the Lord! So in conclusion this in my opinion is a very powerful must read!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Elaine

    Awesome book! Best book I've read since Joyce Meyer's "The Penny." Nancy Rue is an awesome writer. I've even enjoyed her children's books. A tortured soul.... Other countries use torture as a means of punishment and we wonder how anyone could ever do that to anyone. Yet we do it -- We torture the very ones we claim to love -- in our unforgiveness. Further along in the book, she meets a character who shows her God's kind of love from the start -- a balm in Gilead - as they say -- among thorns and Awesome book! Best book I've read since Joyce Meyer's "The Penny." Nancy Rue is an awesome writer. I've even enjoyed her children's books. A tortured soul.... Other countries use torture as a means of punishment and we wonder how anyone could ever do that to anyone. Yet we do it -- We torture the very ones we claim to love -- in our unforgiveness. Further along in the book, she meets a character who shows her God's kind of love from the start -- a balm in Gilead - as they say -- among thorns and unforgiveness. This person isn't the only one who shows her grace, though the people she most needs it from just want to kick her when she's down. I want to reach into that book and hug her but my act of love would only be a drop when she needs it from those she is the closest to -- those she has hurt the most. Without forgiveness from the right people, our acts of love are mere kisses to a wounded soul. We see how those things we do - the choices we make in our pain - can affect the lives of so many. Not just the ones we are closest to but the ones our lives touch upon, and I'm sure there is a trickle-down effect as well. We see that so clearly here in her home and in her work life. Good thing God doesn't make us pay, pay, pay. In order to extend grace to someone else, Demi - the main character - later in the book, bucks against the props that have been holding her up, knowing full well that those props stand a great chance to pull out from under her along with pretty much all she knows to be secure in her life at present. Oh the friends we think we have! How many of our supposed friends will still be there for us when we don't do and be exactly what they demand of us? Are they really too liberal in their "I love you's" when later, we discover it was more in the meaningless context of "I love you with the love of the Lord?" How can we ever learn to love and accept God's love when so much of the love we know is conditional? SAY WHAT YOU MEAN, PEOPLE! AND MEAN WHAT YOU SAY, OH HYPOCRITE!

  22. 5 out of 5

    Suzie

    This is truly an amazing book in that it mixes the truth of Gods Word into the story line in such an interesting manner that I read it in 2 days. I literally could not put it down! How often have you been that caught up in a Sunday School lesson or a sermon? Do not be thrown off by the title. It is a reference to John 8:7 and not even remotely related to worshipping crystals or amethysts. The only fault I find with the book is that the protagonist, a Christian counselor, repeatedly uses the This is truly an amazing book in that it mixes the truth of God’s Word into the story line in such an interesting manner that I read it in 2 days. I literally could not put it down! How often have you been that caught up in a Sunday School lesson or a sermon? Do not be thrown off by the title. It is a reference to John 8:7 and not even remotely related to worshipping crystals or amethysts. The only fault I find with the book is that the protagonist, a Christian counselor, repeatedly uses the expletive, “Holy crow!” Psalm 111:9 reads, “…Holy and awesome is HIS name…” Since Holy is HIS name, in my opinion, describing anything other than one of the personalities of the Trinity as Holy is blasphemy. Not that I am not occasionally blasphemous myself in real life. But this is not real life. It is fiction and fiction has the opportunity to present the ideals to which we aspire. This time I read it for the story. Next time I am reading it for the Truth. I will read it more slowly this next time in order to give the Truth more opportunity to sink in and become a more permanent “premise” on which I “base my actions.” (A little psychology lingo I learned from the book.) I do not know of any book other than the Bible (which can not be read in only 2 days) which better states that if we confess our sins HE will not only forgive them, but forget them as well. And can any story be more entertaining than that?

  23. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    This was my first foray into Christian fiction, and I'm sad to report that I did not like this book at all. I felt it was a stretch to believe the premise that an extramarital affair at a small Christian college would cause such an uproar in the community. In my opinion, there were too many overly dramatized elements of the story. Furthermore, I find it hard to believe in what was portrayed as a strong Christian community, there were very, very few characters who displayed Christ's love and This was my first foray into Christian fiction, and I'm sad to report that I did not like this book at all. I felt it was a stretch to believe the premise that an extramarital affair at a small Christian college would cause such an uproar in the community. In my opinion, there were too many overly dramatized elements of the story. Furthermore, I find it hard to believe in what was portrayed as a strong Christian community, there were very, very few characters who displayed Christ's love and forgiveness to the main character, the adulterous woman. It just didn't jibe. Additionally, the authors' writing style did not resonate with me. The authors used awkward metaphors and language that just didn't sit right with me, which came to increasingly annoy me each time I encountered it. It occurred frequently enough that, to me, it detracted from the story. I will try more Christian fiction, but probably not by these authors.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Mary

    WOW! What a book this was! It is about a professor at a Christian college who is caught in adultery. Stones are a key reference point that are used throughout this story. It shows how creative God can be in turning stones of accustation and shame into works of beauty that lead to healing. There is this awesome Easter sermon mid-way in the book. The people are challenged to hear that God is saying to us: I will pay off all your sins. You are now sin free. I want you to be generous with your WOW! What a book this was! It is about a professor at a Christian college who is caught in adultery. Stones are a key reference point that are used throughout this story. It shows how creative God can be in turning stones of accustation and shame into works of beauty that lead to healing. There is this awesome Easter sermon mid-way in the book. The people are challenged to hear that God is saying to us: I will pay off all your sins. You are now sin free. I want you to be generous with your forgiveness. I want you to tell everyone that I did this for you. I stayed up late at night reading this book. I read it at stop lights and railroad crossings. I got really caught up in the emotion of what the characters in the book were going through and their various stages of learning about forgiveness and healing.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Brent Soderstrum

    Demitria is a college professor teaching religion at a Christian college in Washington with two kids and a husband. Things seem to be going well. She has a secret though. She is having an affair with another professor who she works with. The day she is going to end the affair she agrees to one last tryst. That is when a photographer gets photos of her and her lover. Soon her husband and children know of the affair and her employer also. She loses her job and her family. This is a book about Demitria is a college professor teaching religion at a Christian college in Washington with two kids and a husband. Things seem to be going well. She has a secret though. She is having an affair with another professor who she works with. The day she is going to end the affair she agrees to one last tryst. That is when a photographer gets photos of her and her lover. Soon her husband and children know of the affair and her employer also. She loses her job and her family. This is a book about forgiveness of ourselves and others. Great message with a lot of plot twists and turns. Demitria starts to see a Christian counselor who is taking a sabatical in Washington to get away from his own problems. I saw many connections with the characters to people I knew. Great combination of faith and entertainment.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Rosy

    I am definitely skeptical about Christian fiction, so I may be more picky than usual, but I did find myself tripping just a little on style issues such as word choice and cringeworthy proper names (although I cannot say why they made me cringe--they sounded made up instead of real, somehow). Having said that, this story drew me in and I enjoyed 'going there' to the extent that I read it too quickly and missed it when it was over, which is the main sign of a good read for me. I can't say I was I am definitely skeptical about Christian fiction, so I may be more picky than usual, but I did find myself tripping just a little on style issues such as word choice and cringeworthy proper names (although I cannot say why they made me cringe--they sounded made up instead of real, somehow). Having said that, this story drew me in and I enjoyed 'going there' to the extent that I read it too quickly and missed it when it was over, which is the main sign of a good read for me. I can't say I was especially touched spiritually, as some reviewers were. I would enjoy discussing this one with friends, because I think the line between compassion and legalism is actually very difficult to draw for institutions like colleges--as opposed to individuals, who should be able to make Spirit-led decisions case by case...

  27. 4 out of 5

    Bart Breen

    Edifying Christian Fiction Healing Stones is a well written and well researched book that should appeal to many who not only want to enjoy a mystery but also want to gain insight with well balanced theology and psychology to model their own healing upon. Stephen Arterburn partners with Nancy Rue to provide some fiction that mirrors his counselling ministry on radio in non-fiction writing. A strong emphasis upon grace, forgiveness and learning to forgive oneself comes through in clear Edifying Christian Fiction Healing Stones is a well written and well researched book that should appeal to many who not only want to enjoy a mystery but also want to gain insight with well balanced theology and psychology to model their own healing upon. Stephen Arterburn partners with Nancy Rue to provide some fiction that mirrors his counselling ministry on radio in non-fiction writing. A strong emphasis upon grace, forgiveness and learning to forgive oneself comes through in clear understandible terms. Further, an easy to understand scenario of how unbalanced nouthetic counselling can negatively impact someone's life is presented in a powerful way. Well worth the read. 5 Stars. Bart Breen

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I'm generally not a fan of books that are co-written by a therapist (see the "R" series by Karen Kingsbury - blaugh). I'm also typically not a fan of books that flip between first person and third person - I consider it cheating. But by the time I had finished this book, I'd forgiven Nancy Rue both and am glad to see that Sullivan Crisp will be resurrected again. Rue is not your typical Christian author. She errs on the side of grace, not judgement and she is truly taking her life in her hands I'm generally not a fan of books that are co-written by a therapist (see the "R" series by Karen Kingsbury - blaugh). I'm also typically not a fan of books that flip between first person and third person - I consider it cheating. But by the time I had finished this book, I'd forgiven Nancy Rue both and am glad to see that Sullivan Crisp will be resurrected again. Rue is not your typical Christian author. She errs on the side of grace, not judgement and she is truly taking her life in her hands when she tangles with the touchy subject of adultery on a Christian campus. While not condoning the actions of her characters, she does show us the emotional toll their actions take and ultimately, there is redemption. I wish more movers and shakers in Christendom would take up that message.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jordyn Redwood

    ***A strong 3.5 stars.*** The novel centers around a college professor who has had an affair and the repercussions that follow. Enter Sullivan Crisp-- a Christian counselor with a unique style all his own-- like incorporating his love of games shows into his counseling sessions. The game show anachronisms grew somewhat irritating. I became much more engaged in the novel once it's reveals that Sullivan has had quite a traumatic event happen in his own past that he must work through in order to ***A strong 3.5 stars.*** The novel centers around a college professor who has had an affair and the repercussions that follow. Enter Sullivan Crisp-- a Christian counselor with a unique style all his own-- like incorporating his love of games shows into his counseling sessions. The game show anachronisms grew somewhat irritating. I became much more engaged in the novel once it's reveals that Sullivan has had quite a traumatic event happen in his own past that he must work through in order to fully be able to help other people. If you enjoy more character driven fiction that doesn't shy away from dealing with real life topics than I would recommend this book to you.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Niki

    This is the story of a professor who has a relationship with another man at her university. When she goes to break off the relationship they still end up becoming intimate and pictures that are taken end up being shown to people that shouldn't see them. The professor ends up loosing her job and her family. The story is about her trying to reestablish a life without either of those two most important parts of her life and the people she finds along the way. I know I am being judgemental but This is the story of a professor who has a relationship with another man at her university. When she goes to break off the relationship they still end up becoming intimate and pictures that are taken end up being shown to people that shouldn't see them. The professor ends up loosing her job and her family. The story is about her trying to reestablish a life without either of those two most important parts of her life and the people she finds along the way. I know I am being judgemental but couldn't even feel like I could connect with her from the beginning of the book after she had the affair.

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