The Dearly Beloved is a beautiful story about a lifetime of faith. It's easy to put religious people in one of two camps--either they are devout, perfect people who live quiet lives or they are hypocrites who think themselves above the virtues they espouse. Instead, these characters are real people. They have doubts and challenges, and sometimes find it difficult to interact with people who believe the same things they do. But they are people who keep trying--they show up again for their spouse, their friends, their children, and their church.
This is a life novel--there are no explosions or intrigue; instead, readers get to peek into the everyday moments of a couple having an argument, a pastor having a crisis of faith, and a mother wondering what her child will grow up to be. It's a story about truly knowing people, and walking alongside them as they go through the highs and lows of life. As someone who is married to a minister, I appreciated the kindness with which Cara Wall wrote about the oftentimes unique situations ministers and their families experience. She is a beautiful, incisive writer and I will eagerly read whatever she writes next.
By Cara Wall
Simon and Schuster August 2019
Read via Netgalley