Book Review: Two Crosses

5 Apr

405000_w185When Gabriella Madison arrives in France in 1961 to continue her university studies, she doesn’t anticipate being drawn into the secretive world behind the Algerian war for independence from France. The further she delves into the war efforts, the more her faith is challenged.

The people who surround her bring a whirlwind of transforming forces – a wise nun involved in the smuggling, a little girl carrying secret information, and a man with unknown loyalties who captures her heart. When she discovers a long hidden secret from her past, it all leads to questions about trust, faith in action, and the power of forgiveness to move beyond the pain of the past.


11-05-11-sweetest_thing_arrives__12_Elizabeth Musser, author of acclaimed novels such as The Swan House, grew up in Georgia, but now lives in Lyon, France, where she and her husband serve as missionaries with International Teams. Look for Two Testaments, her sequel to Two Crosses, in stores now, and Two Destinies, the third book in the trilogy, set for release in Fall 2012.

My Impressions:

Two Crosses is the fourth book by Elizabeth Musser that my book club, By The Book has read. Elizabeth has become a favorite author, and we have enjoyed reading her books and then traveling to Atlanta on field trips. Not sure we will be able to travel to the south of France or Algeria, but I think our time discussing Two Crosses will be just as enjoyable.

Two Crosses is set at a point in history I knew nothing about. Algeria’s quest for independence from France began before I was born. But this novel has some universal themes that reach across the decades — what it means to follow God with your whole heart, the soul’s yearning for freedom and the need for forgiveness.

Gabriella Madison, the daughter of missionaries to Africa, is studying for a year in France. She is at once attracted and fearful of David Hoffman, a professor at her school. He is involved in clandestine activities involving the Algerian/French war and their relationship puts Gabriella in danger. Two Crosses is part spy novel, part romance, and is, all in all, a wonderfully told story that kept me engaged. The main characters, along with those in secondary roles, are well-developed, each with his or her own characteristics, quirks and foibles. The many locales in the south of France come alive in Elizabeth’s prose. And as always Elizabeth weaves story and faith together seamlessly. Two Crosses transcends genres, making it a book that anyone will enjoy.

My only complaint is that the book doesn’t quite end — it is book one in the Secrets of The Cross series. I will have to read Two Testaments to find out Gabriella and David’s fate. But Elizabeth Musser always delivers great books, so it won’t be much of a hardship to continue the journey.

Highly Recommended.

(Thank you to David C. Cook and NetGalley for an ebook of Two Crosses. The opinions expressed are mine alone.)

To purchase a copy of Two Crosses, click on the image below.

3 Responses to “Book Review: Two Crosses”

  1. Sue April 7, 2013 at 7:42 pm #

    I’ve read all three books in this trilogy and learned so much about the relationships between Algeria and France. They are so worth reading! I reviewed them on my blog earlier this year and late 2012
    Always enjoy reading your reviews.

    • rbclibrary April 7, 2013 at 8:34 pm #

      Thanks for stopping by, Sue. I will be sure to read your thoughts on this trilogy. I have the audiobook of Two Testaments waiting for my daily walks.


  1. Book Review: Two Testaments | BY THE BOOK - May 14, 2013

    […] reading Two Crosses by Elizabeth Musser (see my review HERE), I just had to read Two Testaments. The second book in the series, it starts where book 1 left […]

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