Need some suggestions on which books the teens in your life would love? Let us help. Recently, I asked my students to share their picks for the best inspirational books for young people. Today’s choice is courtesy of a sweet sophomore named Alissa.
Alissa approaches life with joyful enthusiasm. She maintains an A average, sings in our chapel choir, plays every girls’ sport, volunteers for community service, and takes part in school plays and concerts. Her heart is tender towards God, and her passion for Him inspires me.
I enjoy having Alissa in my English class because we both respond to the power of stories. And another interest we have in common, Alissa loves to write. She wants to be an author and is working on an epic fantasy. So when she came to me looking for reading material, I knew just what to pull off the shelf—Sharon Hinck’s The Restorer.
To say Alissa loved this book would be an understatement. Alissa lived this book. She lost herself in the story. As she devoured the novel during study halls, she would periodically burst out with, “Now that’s a game changer” or “Wow, I really didn’t see that coming” or “I love this part. I have to read it again.” Each time she saw me she would say, “By the way, this is the best book ever.”
What drew her in? She enjoyed picking out similarities between The Restorer and the Old Testament—the elements that brought to mind the twelve tribes of Judah, the divided kingdom, and the work of the prophets. She especially loved how the Lord was woven through every part of the story and considers author Sharon Hinck on par with JRR Tolkien and better than Christopher Paolini. She fell in love with a character named Tristan—part guardian, part avenging angel—and even chose an actor to play him.
After finishing this expanded edition, Alissa hung onto my copy so she could delve into the devotions, songs, recipes, and other bonus material. She now has my book two but has added all three books to her wish list because she wants to own them for herself.
So what are you waiting for? I bet you or someone you know would enjoy this story. Follow this link to buy The Restorer for the fantasy-lovers in your life.
About the author: Sharon’s undergrad degree is in education, and she earned an M.A. in Communication from Regent University in 1986. She spent ten years as the artistic director of a Christian performing arts group, CrossCurrent. That ministry included three short-term mission trips to Hong Kong. She has been a church youth worker, a choreographer and ballet teacher, a home-school mom, a church organist, and a bookstore clerk. One day she’ll figure out what to be when she grows up, but in the meantime she’s pouring her imagination into writing. She’s published dozens of articles in magazines and book compilations, and released her first novel in 2006. In April, 2007, she was named “Writer of the Year” at Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference.
Alissa’s favorite recipe from the book: Tara’s Pepper Soup
- Saute your choice of veggies in butter
- Add 2 cups of diced chicken
- Add 2 cups cream of potato soup
- Flavor with Worcestershire Sauce
- Don’t forget the cracked pepper!