Words Unspoken


by Elizabeth Musser

Published 2009

So I randomly picked up this novel at the library, and it turned out to be a good read.  As you may have read earlier, during my review of Danger in the ShadowsI frequently am embarrassed by Christian fiction.  But books like Henderson’s, and like this one, are delightful exceptions to the rule of mediocrity.

Lissa has suffered from a major tragedy–her mother was fatally hit by a car, and Lissa blames herself for the accident.  Several years later, Lissa still isn’t able to drive on her own.  Her college plans have fallen by the wayside, and her relationship with her dad is incredibly rocky and difficult.

Then she starts driving lessons with Ev McAllistair, an elderly man who specializes in giving lessons to people who are struggling to learn how to drive.  Lissa is drawn to the man’s peace and quite confidence, and ultimately to his God.

Meanwhile, the book also follows the stories of several other apparently unrelated individuals.  As the story unwinds, these lives are drawn together as the author explores how God works through tragedy, and how secrets (even good-intentioned ones) can drive us apart.

In some ways, I felt like the ending was a bit overly dramatic, and it wasn’t a huge shock to find out the answers to the little mysteries that had been unraveling.  However, the language throughout is beautiful.  Somehow, the adjective that springs to mind for this book is gentle.  It is not a fast-paced, wild plot.  But the story doesn’t drag, either.  It just meanders gently along.  I really enjoyed this story, and will be looking for other of Musser’s writings soon.