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Book Review: His Gift

His Gift by Joan C. Benson
His Gift by Joan C. Benson

We shared reviews of His Gift on October 10, 2020 and December 5, 2020, and here’s another review for this terrific novel!

His Gift: This historical novel is suitable for all ages, but the main character is in her late teens. This book is written to appeal to the YA audience, the NA audience, and every adult who has ever cared to dream.

Brace yourself for a thrilling race with twists and turns as a young woman is determined to see her dream come true. On the cusp of the stock market crash of 1929, seventeen-year-old Molly has aspirations for a career in music after high school. With the passion of an athlete preparing for the Olympics, she trains relentlessly to become the best she can be.

As her world collapses in unimaginable ways, she is left to find peace and purpose in the midst of her crisis. The message of His Gift is universal to anyone who has ever dared to dream in spite of uncontrollable circumstances. With Molly, the reader will discover the hope and peace found in a life yielded to the Giver of all gifts.

Review of His Gift by Elaine Johnson:

In life, it is easy for us to set goals that we think will bring us a touch of fame, fortune, or celebrity. Our thoughts may have developed from experiences with childhood recognition or a parent’s prodding, but sometimes it arises from an inner longing to develop a natural gift because of the innate satisfaction it brings. Such was the case with Molly, the 17-year-old protagonist of His Gift. Because of her musical ability, her desire to play professionally became a driving force, and she pursued her goal with determination and perseverance. However, when the opportunity came that would catapult her into a professional career, unforeseeable obstacles threatened her dream. The Great Depression had personal consequences she never imagined.

Readers may be able to relate to Molly as they recall their childhood visions of playing football in the NFL, competing in gymnastics at the Olympics, or having their art work hung in prestigious galleries. But few childhood dreams contain the resolve we see in Molly. Her faith in God carries her through her difficulties, though she doesn’t understand how God is working in her life. Many of us have shared that confusion during the pandemic of 2020. How can God allow these circumstances you may have wondered?

Benson’s research into this time period stays true to history, and opens our eyes to the struggles many endured in the 1930s. Her impeccable attention to details would bring a smile to my face, sometimes bringing my own past to mind.

Molly’s courage waffles up and down as she faces her challenges. At last, Molly relinquishes her grip on what she believed was hers and releases it to God’s Sovereignty. She begins to understand that His Gift was not given for Molly’s individual fame or fortune, but for God’s honor and glory. This lesson is for all of us. When we stop trying to do things our way and actively live according to His plan, then we will find deep joy, peace, and contentment.

~ Elaine Johnson, M.S. Education

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Joan C. Benson, Author
Joan C. Benson, Author

Joan Benson is a freelance writer, a former (K-8) classroom teacher and reading specialist, and a wife a mother of four adult children. She enjoys traveling to spend time with her eight cherished grandchildren who live in various parts of the nation. Joan has produced devotional materials for CBN.com, written numerous magazine articles (most recently for LifeWay’s ParentLife and Regent University’s The Christian Leader). She developed children’s Sunday School curriculum for over twelve years for LifeWay. In addition, Joan continues to write for an array of educational publishers (K-12), developing both teacher and student facing materials, including fiction, nonfiction, and assessments. Joan’s debut historical novel, His Gift, was released in July 2020. Joan and her husband, Jan, live in Chesapeake, VA, with their two Bichon Frisé pets.