March 12, 2012

The Priest and the Peaches, by Larry Peterson

The Priest and the Peaches is the story of the Peach family, immediately following the death of their patriarch. There are five kids, led by Teddy and Joanie, only 18 and 17 respectively. As they bury their father, they contend with what he left behind -- unpaid bills, debt, unsatisfactory living conditions, but also a whole cast of characters ready to pitch in and help.

Plot: I was intrigued by the plot when I picked it up. And I feel like the premise was there. But, in the end, the book was just too simplistic for me. It only spans two weeks, and while a lot happens in that time, you know that there's so much more to the story. These five kids are only at the beginning of an entirely new life and I felt it was a bit of a disservice to only focus on the immediate aftermath.

The book also has a strong Christian message, which I'm not opposed to, but I often find that Christian literature often takes the opportunity to hit you over the head with its intended message. I like a story with a message, but I don't like it when communicating the message means that everything is wrapped up perfectly with a bow on top. Throughout the book, there were "miracles" - the kids magically found money to pay bills when they were down to their last dime and there were people who magically appeared to save the day. Don't get me wrong, I believe miracles happen, but when you added everything up, it felt trite. In the real world, their struggle would have been just that -- a struggle -- even with God and good people on their side. Thus, there had to be a way to get the message across while also communicating the reality of the situation.

Characters: I think the characters were great, but again, I would have liked to see them further developed. Also, the younger Peach had nicknames and that really annoyed me.

Overall, I felt it had potential, but just didn't live up to what I'd hoped. 2 stars.

I received an electronic copy of this book for the purpose of my review. My thoughts are my own, though!

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  1. Megan, thank you for taking the time to read and review Larry's book.

  2. Hi Megan--just wanted to thank you for featuring the book and for doing the review. Just so you know, there is a sequel in the works and the saga of the Peach kids will continue. Best wishes,
    Larry P


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