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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Huck fought in Vietnam and returned home with the terrors of the jungle still inside him. He was a minister at a time when the Columbine High School shooting shocked the nation and he had to console those who had lost loved ones. He lost his wife in childbirth, the newborn baby as well. So, he took to the road, riding a motorcycle to desolate places around the country to escape his past. When he meets up with two unbaptized Amish kids, also biking the countryside, searching for answers, he finds himself once again confronted with many unanswered questions, many troubling dilemmas. As he learns more about the Amish and the two Amish kids learn more about him, they help each other find their way back home, to God and to their faith.
Life is a journey. It has its ups and downs, its joys and sorrows. For some people, like Huck, it also has a lot of pain, horrific events that most people would rather bury and forget. Murray Pura’s novel, Grace Rider, is an intense tale of self-discovery, finding the soul deep within and the faith that holds it together. The story is told mostly in the first-person narrative from Huck’s point of view, the Vietnam vet who meets the two unbaptized Amish kids and helps them on their journey, unknowingly finding himself led by their beliefs. Dialogue and descriptive narrative help move the story along as Huck relates the tale of their journey together that ultimately leads them all back to Amish country and to God. A powerful tale of faith.