Candle in the Darkness Book reviews


Author(s): Lynn AustinDownload  


The daughter of a wealthy slave-holding family from Richmond, Virginia, Caroline Fletcher is raised in a culture that believes slavery is God-ordained and biblically acceptable. But upon awakening to the cruelty and injustice it encompasses, Caroline’s eyes are opened for the first time to the men and women who have cared tirelessly for her. Her journey of maturity and faith will draw her into the abolitionist movement, where she is confronted with the risks and sacrifices her beliefs entail.

Some Reviews: 1189 in


Aerykah rated it      

Update 2/28/16: Just finished my 5th time through this book and I can honestly say I enjoyed it just as much, if not more, this time through! I’m quite sure I’ll be reading it again in the future. 🙂

I just finished reading this book for the 4th time. Is it possible that it gets better every time I read it? I loved it every time & actually can’t wait to read it again! 🙂 This is my favorite series by Lynn Austin and possibly my favorite series of all! I highly recommend these books to all my book-loving friends, especially the ones who like to read about history– the American Civil War, in particular.

This book really made me look at the American Civil War differently than I ever had before. It made me consider the Confederate side of things more. It also helped me to better understand the importance of trying to see both sides of a situation before judging someone’s stand on an issue or response/reaction to a situation. Caroline was in a really tight spot during the war. She had some really hard, important decisions to make. Some people would immediately judge her decisions according to their biased opinions. She truly struggled to make those decisions and to live with the way others treated her because of them. I enjoyed reading about how she felt and what she did to get through those struggles. I’m sorry to say I don’t know that I would have had the character it took to do what she did.

Honestly, it would take way too long to tell everything I like about this book. I can go on, and on, AND ON about it! Suffice it to say that I LOVE this book and hope that all my friends enjoy it too! 🙂


Anita rated it      

wow! awesome! whew!

this book makes the Civil War personal. written from the point of view of a real southern lady (Richmond, VA) who, though she loves her southern home and country, loves God more. the old slave, Eli, teaches her that the Bible says ” slavery is wrong”.

She risks losing absolutely everything to support her beliefs. this story tells WHY she did what she did.

She visits her “northern” cousin first in PA at the death of her mother, then later in a southern prison. She and Eli help him escape. She passes war secrets to the north through a fish-seller. She always treats her family’s slaves with love and compassion. When her father gives her Baby Issac to be her own slave, she gives him his freedom papers immediately.

Her greatest fear is that she would lose Charles’s love. His family, her swing circle friends, and all her neighbors cannot understand why she did what she did. But after reading her confession – written on wallpaper torn from the front hall – and hearing Josiah’s words. . . . well, that scene with Josiah and Charles at the ruins of his flour mill is my favorite.

I look forward to reading more in this series.


Hana rated it     

Revised rating upward: I just downloaded Uncle Tom’s Cabin and several books by Frederick Douglass and I ordered Reconstruction: America’s Unfinished Revolution 1863-1877, all of which means that Candle in the Darkness had more of an impact on me than I first thought. So…bumping the rating up to 4 Stars.

A very readable, clean romance ideal for Christian teens or possibly younger audiences. Good introduction to the Civil War and life in the South, including thoughtful portrayals of slave life.As my new priority reads demonstrate, it’s got me thinking and looking to do more serious reading about slavery, the Civil War, and the Reconstruction.

On the downside, I found the plot a bit improbable, the characters somewhat flat and there were some dangling loose threads left at the end, but it still kept me turning the pages.


Rita rated it      

Another great read by Lynn Austin! I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The characters were well developed and the story flowed seamlessly. If I had to find a flaw, it would be that the ending seemed too short. I know this is the first book in the Refiner’s Fire series; but, since the others are from different people’s perspectives, I’m not sure much, if anything, will be said about this book’s main characters. An epilogue would have been great. That said, I still loved this book and highly recommend it!


Caitlin rated it     

Lynn Austin is becoming one of my favorite authors. Her books are well-written, her settings and characters are full of interesting historical details, and her plots are driven by actual events and legitimately difficult struggles by her characters. She has all the things I love about the Christian romance genre – an uplifting lack of violence and salacious sex scenes (It’s not so much that I’m a prude as that they’re excessively difficult to write well and generally end up just being embarrassing to read.), a bit of romantic tension, and a feel-good happy ending. She includes none of the things I hate about Christian romance – trite, ridiculously improbably back stories, inane dialogue, and a plot driven by stupid, willful misunderstandings between the main characters for the sole purpose of prolonging the book.

Enough about Lynn Austin generally and more about Candle in the Darkness specifically: I really enjoyed this book. I’ve read a lot of books about the Civil War, but there aren’t many that are so sympathetic to the Confederate cause and give such good insight into the myriad reasons people fought for the South. The details about the hardships suffered by the residents of Richmond was really interesting, as were the details about how those hardships were managed/overcome. None of the characters were nearly as well-developed as Caroline, but I didn’t feel that really detracted from the story as most of the book was written from her perspective anyway. On the whole it was a great book, and I’ll be adding more of the author’s books to my to-read list.


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