Last week, I spent time reading a new fiction release that had been recommended to me by a friend (which had also been recommended to her). It was the first release of author, James Rubart, that release being the Christian fiction novel entitled Rooms. Of course, for many, when one hears the phrase ‘Christian fiction novel’, they begin to wonder if such a book is worth their time. There have been plenty of ‘flops’. But I would say this was a good and interesting fiction read, but even more, it did speak to me personally on a more spiritual level.
The major, glaring characteristic of the book is that, not too far in, readers will begin to be reminded of the renowned fiction release, The Shack. I won’t touch on The Shack here, but I did post a 3-part review, if you are interested – part 1, part 2, part 3.
I will say that, though I was not as disturbed by The Shack as some Christians were, readers of Rooms will have a lot less theological problems with this book. Of course, I would expect some to prod and pick at it here and there. We can point out something wrong with this book if we look hard enough. But by no means will the controversy exist with Rooms as it did with The Shack. So, I suppose not as many people will read Rooms as they did The Shack, so not as much pen (or blogging) will be spent on the newer title.
As for the plot of the book, one day, main character, Micah Taylor, receives quite the intriguing letter from his great-uncle, Archie. But, interestingly enough, this great-uncle has been dead for quite a few years now. The letter had been written years ago and it arrives to inform Micah that a 9,000 square-foot house has been built for him on the coast of Oregon, the same place where a tragic event took place in Micah’s life some 15 years previous.
Upon arriving at the mansion, Micah soon finds out there is something unique to the house, something spiritual. After spending time in this house, life begins to change drastically for Micah, ultimately leading him to a significant point of decision in the months to come.
In all, with Rooms, we have a story of a man, a man who had once followed Christ but was now seemingly in control of his own life with much suppressed hurt from the past. But in this account, we read of God’s ferocious pursuit of one man, to set him free in Christ. Through it all, God draws the wayward Micah through this large Oregon-coast mansion, letters left to him by his great-uncle, Archie, his new found friend, Rick, and an attractive and winsome young lady, Sarah.
As I said, I not only enjoyed the book as a fiction work, but also the spiritual level at which it spoke to me. I am aware that, as a male, I love to be in control of my life, and that pull easily carries over into the people and things intricately connected to my life. It is probably the deepest sin I personally deal with. Thus, to see God pursue Micah Taylor in such a unique way, in a somewhat paranormal way through the events on the Oregon coast, this shows the aggressive and passionate love of our good, loving and tender Father. Hence, this story truly stirred me towards freedom, freedom from being ruled by control obsession.
Rooms was a great read and, if one is looking for a good, Christian read, I would recommend the book. Not only that, but I am now interested in picking up James Rubart’s new 2011 release, Book of Days.