4 out of 4 stars
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Love can be a strong force that is so difficult to resist. People falls in love in different ways. However, one thing is for sure, love can make human beings to do really strange things. In the novel The Spirit of Want by William H. Coles, love is the predominant theme. The leading character Lucy is caught in a love triangle created by herself. Lucy is a highly respected lawyer who falls in love with her client, an evangelist accused of sexually molesting a child. She falls in love with him in the course of the trial. Lucy loses the case in the first instance and while the matter is on appeal, the evangelist flees to Africa. Lucy abandons her young family; her husband and young daughter to follow the evangelist to Africa. It is after leaving her family and following the evangelist that she wonders whom her real love really is. She decides to go back to the states to rebuild her broken life and career. Will she succeed in her newly found course?
I loved the themes discussed by the author in this novel. In addition to the theme of love, the author discusses themes like family and marriage life, divorce, religion and hypocrisy, effects of drug abuse and rotten justice system. These themes are self-evident in the society today. Avid readers can easily identify with them. I was awed by the theme of love, family and marriage as a result of their interconnectedness. The leading character, Lucy is just insensitive to family. Her insensitive nature is the reason for her broken family. She abandons her young family to pursue her fake love for the evangelist, Hower Bain. She represents a faction of people in the society who break up their homes for petty reasons and go out in search of greener pastures only to find themselves lost in the wilderness. This book spreads the value of family amongst the readers. I believe that was excellent.
Another feature I admired in the novel is the strong character development. The character of Lucy matures as the plot matures. The author introduces us to a Lucy who is insensitive to other people feelings, self-centered and who is so full of herself. Those are traits that nobody can be proud of possessing. Moreover, she pushes away her family and friends who shows her affection. However, Lucy character transforms after she had abandoned her family to elope with the evangelist to Africa. She realizes the value of her family in her life and decides to go back to the states to rebuild her life, career and win over her family and friends again.
I also loved the use of suspense in the novel. Suspense in this novel just increased my desire to learn about Lucy’s fate in the novel. I loved the suspense used after Lucy had followed the evangelist to Africa. She asks herself deep questions about who her life’s real love really is. Such suspense left me asking questions like; whether he was going to leave the evangelist and go back in pursuit of her family, and if she did so, whether her family would openly accept her back following her treachery. On the other hand, I was inquisitive of her fate in the event she did not go back to her family. The desire to find the answers to the foregoing questions made me read more pages to found out what happened next to Lucy.
There is nothing I disliked in this novel. It has an amazingly good content, is exceptionally well edited and has proper character growth. These are the qualities of great novels and are reasons why I rate it at 4 out of 4 stars. I recommend it to all persons struggling with love and family life. The book has a powerful message on love and family which I believe could be useful to such persons. On the contrary, persons having no interest in romance genres may look for other novels.
The Spirit of Want
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