May 2, 2012

Ruth's Redemption by Marlene Banks

Set in the 1800s, Ruth's Redemption, is an unusual depiction of the lives of slaves and free blacks in pre-Civil War America. Bo, was educated while a slave. He was given his freedom and now owns a farm buying slaves for the sole purpose of giving them their freedom. Bo is also a man of God and widower whose life is destined to change when he meets the proud and hard-hearted slave girl, Ruth.

Ruth has known nothing but servitude and brutality since being separated from her mother at age thirteen. Purchased and sold primarily for breeding, Ruth struggles to adjust to life outside of bondage. She wants no part of Bo's Godly devotion. Yet Bo is unlike any man she's known and her experiences with him will leave her forever changed.

A gripping slave era novel, Ruth's Redemption is a story of love, forgiveness, and redemption. Set against the backdrop of the Nat Turner Rebellion in Tidewater, Virginia, this novel shines the light of God's unconditional love in the darkness of a culture's cruel socially accepted inhumanity.

Marlene Banks has worked 30+ years combined in nursing and the business arena. Her goal as a writer is to create inspiring, gripping and realistic stories with an emphasis on African American literature. She believes her gift and desire to write is from God and desires to use it to fulfill His purposes. Marlene lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where she is a member of Bethel Deliverance International Church.

Ruth's Redemption begins in the early 1830's in a small town in Virginia. The first chapter is about the unspeakable brutality handed out by the slave traders, and the humiliation and desperation felt by the women being sold at a slave auction. Ruth is one of the women on the auction block, and at first glance she appears defiant, strong-willed and impossible to handle.

Determined that no man will ever be her master, Ruth is shocked by the kindness and patience of the man who pays the required price to take her away from the auction. Bo is an ex-slave and he is a successful farmer on his own land. Ruth has never experienced kindness and gentleness in her entire life, and she doesn't know how to respond.

Both Ruth and Bo have a difficult past and painful memories that they need to deal with before they can find happiness, and unfortunately the danger is far from over from the slave traders.

Ruth's Redemption is a stark look at a part of our history that is so heart breaking and unjust, that it's almost impossible to imagine.  We all need to read books like this one, just to help us remember. I highly recommend this book, it's an amazing story of courage and redemption that I won't soon forget.

Disclosure: Review copy received courtesy of Moody Publishers in exchange for my honest review.


  1. This book sounds like it offers a creative look at this era, and the man of God and Ruth sound like people with interesting stories.

  2. I really enjoyed this novel. Ms. Marlene did her thing with this one. Her gift for writing definitely is on display. I enjoyed the characters and her detail to that era. I plan on purchasing a few for gifts.