Book Review: Grace Triumphant

Anastasis Faith

From the back of the book:

      “Profligate London, 1788. Slave ships haunt the seas, bearing human cargo to further the wealth of the rich and destroy the souls of the slave traffickers.
      Russell Lawrence is an avid skeptic. Captain of the slave ship Barbados, wealthy, and a respected leader, he views religion as a crutch for the weak. But when the debauchery of the slave trade begins to destroy his good morals, his battle becomes more than fighting pirates and mutineers. What if there really is a God?
      Impressed as a cabin boy, Jack Dunbar sees his forced service on the Barbados as a God-given opportunity to witness Christ to the crew. But his efforts to influence the hardened slavers seems to be doing little good. How is it possible to live as a Christian on the sin-ravaged seas? Can his light shine bright in Africa's dark interior?
      Back in Grosvenor Square, Elizabeth Grey battles opposition from society and her self-seeking fiancĂ©. Her work with John Newton to end the slave trade is being harshly attacked. She faces life branded as a jilter and radical if she stands up for what she believes in. Will she ever glean the strength to call sin by its rightful name?
      A tale of adventure on the high seas, redemption, and faith. Sin abounds. Is grace enough to conquer doubt and triumph over evil?”



From the back of the book:

      “Profligate London, 1788. Slave ships haunt the seas, bearing human cargo to further the wealth of the rich and destroy the souls of the slave traffickers.
      Russell Lawrence is an avid skeptic. Captain of the slave ship Barbados, wealthy, and a respected leader, he views religion as a crutch for the weak. But when the debauchery of the slave trade begins to destroy his good morals, his battle becomes more than fighting pirates and mutineers. What if there really is a God?
      Impressed as a cabin boy, Jack Dunbar sees his forced service on the Barbados as a God-given opportunity to witness Christ to the crew. But his efforts to influence the hardened slavers seems to be doing little good. How is it possible to live as a Christian on the sin-ravaged seas? Can his light shine bright in Africa's dark interior?
      Back in Grosvenor Square, Elizabeth Grey battles opposition from society and her self-seeking fiancĂ©. Her work with John Newton to end the slave trade is being harshly attacked. She faces life branded as a jilter and radical if she stands up for what she believes in. Will she ever glean the strength to call sin by its rightful name?
      A tale of adventure on the high seas, redemption, and faith. Sin abounds. Is grace enough to conquer doubt and triumph over evil?”

About the author:

Alicia A. Willis is a homeschool graduate and an avid historian. From an early age she has had the desire to write family friendly, accurate books about the past. When not writing or doing endless historical research, she enjoys singing, being a church pianist, and teaching music. She and her husband live in Tennessee.

 My thoughts:

Alicia Willis is a dear friend of mine and I’ve read a number of her books—all of which I recommend. However, Grace Triumphant is probably her best (though it’s a close race with From the Dark to the Dawn). Her writing style grows more potent with every book.
I enjoyed Grace Triumphant very much. It is not a light read; it’s very heavy. It is about the slave trade and the majority of the book is on a slave ship.
      Alicia’s characters were very strong. They had personality, fears, strengths, weaknesses, and quirks. I particularly liked Russell and Jack, who seemed very real.
      I was particularly impressed with the development of Russell throughout the story. He started off basically as a moral atheist. He refused to participate in the normal evils associated with slaving. However, as circumstances got harder throughout the course of the book, Russell was left with one question, “Why am I being so moral?” When his morality was put to the test, he realized that he had no reason to be upright. And thus he declined slowly throughout the book. Without unnecessarily giving away too many spoilers, I was very pleased with how he was changed at the end. I was expecting the change to be forced, since he was such a hardened character. However, the author handled it beautifully, which left me pleasantly surprised.
      As always, Alicia’s book was highly researched even down to social customs and sea faring expressions. It has a strong Christian message which is woven beautifully throughout the book without sounding “preachy.”

Sexual content/language/profanity:

      This IS a story about the slave trade…
      There are no curse words or swearing explicit in the text. There are also no explicit sexual descriptions. However, there is a strong immoral theme on the slave ship. There is a scene on the coast of Africa where the African women are trying to seduce Russell. While nothing is explicit, this is not a scene for young children.

What I didn’t like:

      Considering all the things I loved about this book, the minor things I did not find ideal were very insignificant. The only thing was how long the two storylines of Russell and Elizabeth were separate, and how little they ended up connecting at the end. Either way, it did not take away from their individual journeys and the way each character grew along the way.

Final thoughts:

Grace Triumphant was an excellent book that I highly recommend. I also recommend reading From the Dark to the Dawn, as well as checking out her other books. You can connect with her on her blog, or on social media. Her writing is exceptional and she is a wonderful person to get to know! 


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Anastasis Faith / Author & Editor

Anastasis is a Texas girl who enjoys writing, blogging, and music. You can connect with her here on her blog, or at morningglorypursuingjesus @yahoo.com

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