When I agreed to read and review Cherished by Kim Cash Tate, I remembered reading her first book Faithful, which I really enjoyed. What I didn’t know at the time was that this book picks up where the first left off, following the stories of some of the secondary characters we were briefly introduced to earlier. The story also follows the main characters we got to know in the first book, which was a nice surprise.
The two main characters in this book are Kelli London and Heather Anderson, two young women at a crossroads in their lives. Kelli has been living far away from her faith and a past that she feels disqualifies her from the love of God. Through a move back home, relationships with her family members, and a renewed communication with an ex-boyfriend who is tied into all that still plagues her, she’s able to confront the past, find peace, and draw closer to God. The beginning of the book finds Heather in the midst of her problems, frustrated and hopeless at the way her life is turning out. Through the friendship of several Christians, Heather is able to accept the love that God has for her and make a life change. Figuring out how to reconcile her past mistakes with her new desire to live for Christ proves difficult, though. Both Kelli and Heather come to discover that they are cherished by God, despite their pasts.
I think I remember saying that parts of Faithful seemed cheesy and were heavy on the “Christianese,” and the same is true for Cherished. However, I didn’t care at all because I loved the characters, and I loved the story, cheese and all! I found it hard to understand at times why there was such a struggle on the part of both women to just move on from their mistakes, but their inability to do so reflected that they were written as real, frail, troubled people, which made the book more believable. The ending was predictable, but since it was a very happy ending, I was glad for it. I’m eagerly waiting to see if there’s another book in this series…
Many thanks to Thomas Nelson Publishing for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book to review. All opinions expressed are mine entirely.