Bethany House Publishers
The Longing Season by Christine Schaub is the expanded and somewhat romanticized story of the creation of the world's most loved hymn, "Amazing Grace," by John Newton. This is a story about deliverance: deliverance from self-righteousness, from evil, and from a wasted life.
John Newton is portrayed as an intelligent but self-absorbed young man who refuses to put faith in anything that he cannot experience and understand in logical ways. This does not include Christianity. But there are many people who love John and who are prayer warriors on his behalf. None is more faithful in this than Mary Catlett, Newton's love interest since childhood. Mary is adventurous and fun-loving, but she also is determined, through her genuine concern and love for Newton, to bring him home to Jesus. In all that she does, Mary is a walking testimony to the joy that comes in service to the Lord and the knowledge of being part of the family of God.
Newton's arrogance often leads him to times of solitude, alienation, and self-examination. His life becomes fast paced and lively, yet unfulfilling. Eventually, he even knows hard times. Ultimately, the love of Christ overwhelms Newton's crusty exterior, and he admits he has been depressed and lost without the Savior. He pens a confession, "Amazing grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me." The words are sincere, vivid, honest, and poetical. The song reflects the genuine love of one sinner for the redeemer who welcomed him home.
Anyone who has gone through bouts of loneliness or hard times, or anyone who has experienced the exultation of being saved from a life of sin will find this book entertaining, insightful, and poignant. – Angela A. Wood, Christian Book Previews.com
In the 1740s, British culture allows few options for the son of a merchant ship captain. And in a time of war, a man with John Newton's experience must serve the king. But Newton--a man who quotes Virgil and curses God with equal fervor--is interested in serving only himself.
Mary Catlett simply cannot believe her childhood friend sailed away on a British warship and vanished in Africa. In desperation, she takes a step that will change her life and call her lost love home. But will he arrive in time?