The wife of a successful (and unfaithful) plastic surgeon has decided to run away from home. Her children are grown, her husband doesn't need her, and she is tired of the life she is living. She plans to go to a beach house they own, but to which she has rarely been--usually it is the site of guys' fishing trips rather than family vacations. Her bag is packed, she plans to leave in the morning, but when her husband comes home that night, he has news. He has brain cancer, and is dying. He wants to spend the time he has left at the beach house. The next day, off they go.
Saphora, the wife, resents her husband's illness, but doesn't abandon him. For much of the book I didn't like either one of them. He manipulated her emotionally and gave her little but material goods. She didn't seem to be able to stand up to him. In some ways she was too good to be true; selfless, giving, open to those many in society would reject.
The book is Christian fiction, but for the first 200 pages, you'd never guess--you'd classify it as women's fiction or southern fiction. However, at that point Bender, the husband, wants to go to church for the first time in years, and we get to hear part of the sermon. Later, she finds the Bible the minister gave him, with underlined passages and questions. Of course, she goes to the minister with the questions. Still, this isn't a book where they find God and live happily ever after--rather is seems to help readers reflect on those questions all of us will have as suffering and death become real in our lives.
I enjoyed The Pirate Queen and recommend it. Grade: B+
I'd like to than WaterBrook Press for the complimentary review copy. You can see reviews of this book and others at their Blogging for Books site.