Sunday, July 31, 2011

Water's Edge by Robert Whitlow


Tom Crane is working for a large Atlanta law firm hoping that he will make partner. His hopes are dashed though when he is "consolidated" instead. Finding himself without a job and girlfriendless(his girlfriend breaks up with him in a letter), Tom heads to his hometown to settle the affairs of his father who recently died in a drowning accident.

While Tom closes his father's law firm he stays with his uncle Elias. At first Tom doesn't want to hear anything from Elias about spiritual things. But when Tom has a spiritual encounter of his own in his father's law office he becomes more open and accepting of heavenly things.

Tom soon uncovers what looks to be an embezzlement scheme involving a client of his father's and an employee at the local Pelham company. Considering that he is best friends with Arthur Pelham's son Rick, Tom fully believes that his father's client was involved in the embezzlement. 

When Rick's wife Tiffany starts flirting with Tom he is flattered and tries to rationalize his attraction to her. After all she assures him that their marriage is on the rocks and she is willing to leave it all behind to be with Tom. Tom soon realizes his rationalization as sin and repents of it. He soon becomes attracted to Rose Addington. Rose refuses to believe that her father was involved in any way in the embezzlement scheme. She challenges Tom to do further research into the events that led up to their fathers deaths.

That research soon lands both Tom and Rose in jail and in serious danger. With his life seeming to fall apart before his eyes, Tom has a hard time calling out to the God that he so recently trusted.

First off the positive: Water's Edge reminded me of reading one of John Grisham's novels, but add in a more spiritual content. I was engaged in the story and characters from the beginning through to the end. The writing flowed and the story remained fairly consistent.

The negative: For me the spiritual content was a bit too mystical mixed with charasmatic. When Rose talked about Tom's office being a "thin" place(a place where there is less separation between heaven and earth) I was thinking, "WHAT?!" Another time Tom asked his uncle if he was a mystic. He described a mystic as being "someone who withdraws from the world and spends time having weird spiritual experiences." Tom's whole relationship with the Lord was based on emotionalism and when the emotion wasn't there then he easily fell away into despair. At one point when everything seemed to come crashing down on him he contemplated suicide. To the point of getting the gun out and having it under his chin to do the job. I understand that we all have our mountaintop experiences, but to crash so low to want to end it all did not seem consistent with Tom's character.

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