The Pastor's Wife Wears Biker Boots, by Karla Akins
Genre: Christian Fiction / Women's Fiction
Reason for reading: I'm leading a discussion on this book from February 24th through 28th on the American Christian Fiction Writer's Association book club. You can join the email discussion group if you wish! Just click on the link, and subscribe to the yahoo group. There's still plenty of time to read the book!
Synopsis: Kirstie is stressed out trying to maintain the image of the perfect pastor's wife. She'd really just like to relax and not worry about what everyone in her congregation thinks. On top of that, she has a severely autistic son, and another rebellious teenage son - both of whom lead to a lot of sideways looks from her conservative neighbors. When she realizes that riding a motorcycle releases her built up tension and makes her love life again, she has to deal with the prejudices of small-town gossips.
My Thoughts: This is not the type of book that I usually read, so I was surprised when, after about 30-or-so pages, I became really attached to the characters and their issues. This was a sweet, funny book about finding friends in unexpected places, letting go of preconceived notions, forgiving those who gossip about you, and putting your family above work and social image. I got lots of good laughs over the antics of our "biker chicks."
I was a little concerned at the beginning of the book when the subject of autism was first brought up: Kirstie called it an "ugly disease" and her "enemy." It is possible that some people will find this portrayal of autism to be offensive. However, I was glad to see Kirstie grow throughout the rest of the book. As she released her woes on the road, Kirstie became less depressed and was better able to cope with the difficulties of autism. Hidden here is a fantastic message that we can not give fully to loved ones unless we take care of ourselves too.
I don't want to drop any spoilers, but I have to say that the ending of the book was not only the most exciting part, it was the funniest as well. Wow. Way to pack it in at the end! :) Fantastic finish.