Book Review: Letters From War

30 Aug

Every night, Natalie leaves the front porch light on. Just in case. It’s been two years since her son, James, went missing while saving the life of a fellow paratrooper in his division. Natalie’s faith has sustained her while she awaits word on her son’s whereabouts. Well-meaning friends encourage Natalie to move on, but Natalie continues to hope.


Mark Schultz is a Dove-Award winning artist and has become one of Christian music’s most acclaimed singer/songwriters. He received BMI’s Christian Song of the Year in 2003 for “Back in His Arms Again.” Schultz has also tasted success on the mainstream adult contemporary charts with such hits as “He’s My Son,” “Letters from War,” and “Walking Her Home.” Schultz has flooded radio with ten No. 1 songs, such as “Remember Me” and “I Am the Way.” He’s also earned the top spot on Billboard magazine’s Christian Adult Contemporary Songwriter list. His 2005 release, Mark Schultz Live . . . A Night of Stories & Songs, sold RIAA certified Platinum and garnered Schultz his first GMA Dove Award.

Travis Thrasher is the author of twelve works of fiction including two novellas, The Promise Remains and The Watermark. He has been called “the Nicholas Sparks of Christian fiction” by Christian Retailing magazine. Travis’s drive and imagination have allowed him to see a variety of books published: from love stories (The Watermark; Three Roads Home) to suspense (Gun Lake; Admission; Blinded) to drama (The Second Thief; Sky Blue) to supernatural thrillers (Isolation; Ghostwriter). Travis lives with his wife and three-year-old daughter in a suburb of Chicago.


My Impressions:


Letters From War written by Mark Schultz with Travis Thrasher is a novel based on Schultz’s song of the same name.  This time the war is the one we are waging in Afghanistan and James has been MIA for almost two years.  The story is told in a series of letters to and from James from the time of  his recruitment until his disappearance in the wilds of Afghanistan.  What results is a look into what makes a hero and the extreme sacrifices of our servicemen and women and the families left at home. Also emphasized is the powerful work of prayer — even in times when God seems especially silent.


James does not see himself as a hero, just someone dedicated to defending his country wherever it may send him.  His mother doesn’t feel like a strong woman, but that’s what others see as she continues praying and working for her missing son, even when others say it is time to move on.   A quick read, Letters From War will leave you with a new understanding and appreciation for what it takes to be a member of a military family.  Read this book if you are part of a military family — mother, wife, father, brother.  Read this book if you are not, because we all need a new perspective on war, duty and sacrifice.





(I received Letters From War from Howard Books.  The opinions expressed are mine alone.)

2 Responses to “Book Review: Letters From War”

  1. Brenda August 31, 2011 at 5:17 pm #

    Your comment of James not really seeing himself as a hero, made me think that heros rarely realize that they do anything heroic, they just do what needs done, without realizing their acts are actually heroic! This sounds like a great book, and I am definitely putting it on my tbr list.

    • rbclibrary August 31, 2011 at 8:13 pm #

      It was eye opening for me, since I don’t come from a military family. My father kept most of his service to himself (WWII)

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