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Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Cruel Harvest

Thomas Nelson Publishers sent me a copy of Cruel Harvest by Fran Elizabeth Grubb for the purpose of review.

Fran Grubb has a passion for helping and encouraging people. She travels across the United States with her husband, Wayne, singing her way into the hearts of her listeners and speaking at churches, tent revivals, prisons, women's shelters, children's homes, drug and rehab clinics and any place there is a need.  D. James Kennedy featured Fran in his "Reclaiming America for Christ" campaign in 2003.  Fran and her husband are founders of Feed The Hungry Children, a non profit working with the hurting in Kenya. She loves good coffee, reading, all dogs and belly laughter. When Fran is not writing she is singing and playing the guitar.  Ms Grubb's website can be found at

In Cruel Harvest Fran shares the horrific details of her childhood.  The book is extremely graphic and difficult to read.  Fran details the emotional, physical and sexual abuse she, her siblings and her mother suffered at the hands of her abusive and alcoholic father.  As far as writing goes, the book is well written.  Ms Grubb tells her story from the vantage point of a reunion with her siblings as adults as they are "thinking back" on their childhood.  She gives the reader an appropriate reprieve from the graphic content with these snapshots of the reunion with some of her siblings.

As far as content goes, I'm not really sure what to say about the book.  I'm not naive.  I know that such abuse happens far more often probably than anyone is aware because most will not have the courage to share their story as Ms Grubb has.  However, I'm not certain how this book can be particularly helpful.  The book is heavy on the details of the horrifying abuse Ms Grubb suffered, but very light on on the good news of the gospel, which is the only hope in such circumstances.  There are a few references to how Fran and her siblings would "pray" and a few references to "gospel" songs her mother would sing and how God's "presence" was helping her survive, but outside of those references there is no real mention of the hope that is found in Christ.  Fran and her husband do talk at the end of the book about the need for forgiveness on Fran's part toward her father. 

This book is very difficult to read and anyone with a tender heart toward children and the abuse some suffer may not be able to make it through.  If I had to "rate" this book as far as the content goes, I would have to give it an "R" rating.  My overall rating of the book as far as readability/usefulness would be a "3" star rating for the reasons listed above.



Jackie Kaulitz said...

Good review. I agree with the R rating and that its hard to see how the book can be helpful. You are an excellent writer. Well-written review.