Stand by Me

548641: Stand By Me, SouledOut Sisters Series #1 Stand By Me, SouledOut Sisters Series #1
By Neta Jackson / Thomas Nelson
Title of Book: Stand by Me
Author: Neta Jackson
ISBN 978-1-59554864-1
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2012
Reviewer: Dell Smith Klein

Kathryn Davies is a bright young woman from a prominent Phoenix family. But after making a leap of faith at a Christian music fest, dropping out of med school, and moving to inner city Chicago, her family all but disowns her.

When Kat discovers SouldOut Community Church, she longs to become a part of the multicultural church family. But her tendency to immediately say whatever she’s thinking steps on the toes of nearly everyone she meets, especially Avis Douglass.

Avis has a strong faith, is the principal of one of Chicago’s highest performing elementary schools, and is a founding member of SouldOut. But the country’s economic down turn has thrown both her and her husband’s jobs in question. And Avis hasn’t heard from her youngest daughter in months – an estrangement that gnaws at her every day. Where is God in this?

Kat’s flamboyant zeal for living a radical Christian life is a stark contrast to Avis’ more reserved faith. But in God’s timing the two women discover they need each other in ways neither of them expected.

Neta Jackson, author of Stand by Me, continues to write thought-provoking, entertaining novels. You may remember the Trailblazer Books–historical fiction based on stories of Christian heroes. Those books were team written by Dave and Neta Jackson.

Now the Jacksons’ each writes adult fiction. Neta Jackson says she grew up on the campus of a private Christian college where her parents taught in Seattle. She and her husband live in Chicago.

This reviewer couldn’t help but rub her hands together and dive into Stand by Me when it made it’s appearance on the nightstand. I have enjoyed the Yada Yada Prayer Group novels by Neta Jackson and was eager to read more about Avis Douglass, the always classy mentor of the Yada Yadas. Avis is feeling grumpy, her daughter is sick and the daughter and grandson have dropped out of sight. SouldOut Community Church has some problems that Avis never dreamed could happen. Into her life walk young people she just doesn’t want to deal with.

Stand by Me is salted with characters that keep the reader turning pages. Kathryn (known as Kat) Davies, Olivia, Brygitta and Nick show up in contrast to Aviss conservative lifestyle. Kat is just out there, blurting out whatever happens to flow through her mind, but trying her best to live a Christian life. Kat and three of her friends decided to spent the summer in Chicago and attend SouldOut Church and the church may never be the same again.

Stand by Me is an enjoyable read. Thank you, Neta Jackson, and thank you, Thomas Nelson Publishing.


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