4 out of 4 stars
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The Spirit of Want
Luke Osborne, a protégé of A.J MacMiel is invited to a party by his mentor, where he gets the chance to commingle with his family members - Lucy and Elizabeth MacMiel, his two daughters and Agnes, his wife. Lucy, a lawyer, is believed to be adopted by A.J. This is something that Lucy herself is not proud of. She detests this family gathering and it is her drinking bout that leads to an accident which also involves Luke Osborne.
This event lead to close encounters between both the victims but it is only so that she can escape the charges being levied against her, by appeasing the only witness present at the time, Luke Osborne. However, she is charged with vehicular Manslaughter.
After six months, they get married and later on have a child, Jennifer. This is the start of her inferiority complex as a mother. Her uncertainty about motherhood leads her to neglect her child. To avoid the responsibility, she immerses herself in her work tirelessly. A case with an evangelist-Hower Bain, leads to an amorous encounter which estranges Lucy from her family on grounds of unfaithfulness.
Luke Osborne feels betrayed, and after Lucy leaves to follow her lover to Africa, he seeks comfort in the hands of her sister, Elizabeth. A divorce ensues. Lucy will believe anything Hower says and it is this relationship that will lead her to her death.
William H. Coles expertly portrays the legal, medicinal and religious battles in this thriller. It is no wonder this book has induced so many feelings. Lucy, the central figure in this story, is somehow involved in all of these themes. This enamors me to the book. The realistic and simple way in which William H. Coles explains everything without delving very deep into technical terms is the mark of a true writer. I felt dread for Lucy, hatred for her, pity then love. The prowess of such writings to induce all these emotions has captivated me to the story. I have never read a book with such strong character representation, yet with the quality of vulnerability.
There have been a few errors which might have passed the eye but nothing to fret so much about. The ones noted were the spelling of Osborne as Osbourne especially on the first line of the first chapter. However the writer reverts to the initial one in the subsequent pages. The other one is in chapter sixteen, the spelling of Jennifer as Jenifer.
I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. It has hit the right points and expresses truth in a way that is both traumatic and comforting at the same time. Lucy embodies every sense of the title, The Spirit of Want. Readers who enjoy drama and a book that elicits such gamut of emotions will find this book a safe haven. There are very fundamental topics that some will find upsetting, even abhor, controversial things like mistreatment of children and abandonment have received so much focus.
The Spirit of Want
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