“You’re about the most controlling know-it-all I’ve ever met. You expect a lot from yourself – and your friends. You’re, in a word, obsessive. That’s great for business but not so great in relationships. You need to loosen up, have some fun, and stop trying to be in charge of everything. I know you’re afraid of losing everything you love, including Sierra, but you can’t control everything. Not life, not people.”
“I’m not controlling –“
“When I came on deck, you were declaring to the wind and seas that all would be well. As if they would obey you.”
No, he was… okay, maybe… if he could…
Book: Troubled Waters by Susan May Warren, Revell Publishers, 2018
Genre: Realistic Fiction/Adventuer
Target Audience: Adult Women
Subjects: Trust in God, Fear, Dating Relationships
Summary: Sierra wants to go back in time. If she could just not have made that promise to Esme, or just told Ian the truth right away, maybe she wouldn’t be sitting on the same boat as him feeling an ocean away. Ian wants to fix it. And by “it” he means everything. His business that is falling apart, his niece running away and maybe most of all, his relationship with Sierra. When they join forces on a fundraiser voyage to fix the PEAK helicopter that targets Ian’s wealthy friends, they are at least confident that, as Sierra tells Ian, “We’re not going to encounter a rogue storm, go down in the middle of the Caribbean and end up on a desert island.” Except, that’s almost exactly what happens. When an accident occurs, Ian and Sierra do find themselves trapped together on a desert island. But maybe, just maybe, God has a plan to use this to bring them both to where He wants them.
Notes: Troubled Waters is the fourth in the Montana Rescue Series about characters living in a small town running search and rescue operations. This particular book deals with the characters who support the actual rescuers. Ian’s money funds it. Sierra makes cookies. Both long to feel like they are essential, or even just a little bit important. And both wrestle with trust. Ian has seen one person after another taken from him. He’s learned to control every single detail of life – and to guard his heart so that no one else dies or disappears, breaking his heart further in the process. Sierra has lived with a hippie mom and the men coming in and out of her life, and as Ian puts it, lives in “fear that you’ll be left behind. Forgotten. Fear that you aren’t important.” When the accident happens, they can choose to have faith in God and one another or cling to their fears.
These two characters were actually introduced in the prequel to the series and the issue of Ian’s missing niece is the secondary issue each book deals with.
The series overall is themed around Amazing Grace – each book dealing with some of the themes of the song – being lost and found and finding grace.
Personal Note: Every once in a while you read a book and feel as though the author must know you and have modeled their character after you. That’s how I felt about Ian in this story. When fear attacks a person can surrender to the fear and shut down, they can fight it by trying to control every circumstance of life or they can put their eyes back on God. Ian deals with it by fighting to control everything. So do I. And Sierra’s fear is that if she doesn’t prove her worth constantly, others will see that she’s not so important. And that’s even with a supposedly strong faith in God. I can strongly relate to that as well. So this note is a sort of warning – don’t read this book if you struggle with fear and don’t want to be challenged. Susan May Warren doesn’t hold back in her encouragement to move on from the fear that controls you and find freedom to truly live.
I personally found this to be the best of the series so far.
Spiritual Content Recommendation Scale: 5/5
Enjoyment Scale: 5/5
Psalm 142:7 – Set me free from my prison, that I may praise Your name. Then the righteous will gather about me because of Your goodness to me.
Thank you to Susan May Warren for gifting her cousin, Ruth, with a copy of this book to gift to me!
I enjoyed it very very much!