BROWSE BOOK REVIEWS:

"FINDING THE NARROW PATH" By Lin Wilder

Posted by Matt McAvoy on Sunday, September 24, 2017 Under: Book Reviews


This is the third of Lin Wilder’s books I’ve read, and the only non-fiction title, the first two being instalments 1 and 2 of her Lindsey McCall series.  It is the memoir of Lin’s own life and her diversion from, then return to religion.  Ironically, and somewhat surprisingly for me, it is the best I’ve read from her, without a shadow of doubt.  I may not be a believer to any degree, yet Lin’s biography had me spellbound, and I simply couldn’t put it down until midway (and even then only because my tablet’s battery died).

I was a tad skeptical before reading “Finding the Narrow Path…”, having advised Lin that faith was as alien to me as any subject could be, and, if I’m totally honest, a little wary of being subjected to pages and pages of scripture interpretation.  But, this couldn’t have been further from the truth: this is not a book about religion, but about Lin’s life, about which religion emerges later as a prominent ingredient; she does not impose her belief, but simply acknowledges its notable role in her life in a matter-of-fact manner. 

This writing style is prevalent through the whole book, and it would be obtuse of the reader not to understand why: her writing style has given her the discipline to be incredibly candid and honest, and, perhaps more notably, immensely courageous, opening up about episodes in her life which must have been pure agony to live through, let alone relive and put on display; I believe there is little, if anything, she has held back.  She makes no excuses for her behaviour – the guilt and shame Lin clearly feels at some of the decisions she has made in life are gifted to the reader by her.  I’m in no doubt this is entirely intentional: her biography is not an exercise in narcissism or vanity, I think it is more therapeutic than that: like her decision to join the Catholic church, it is her absolution.

Lin’s story, while not particularly uncommon, is heartbreaking at times and inspirational at others, and I have a much greater affection for the author now I have read it.  I respect Lin hugely, having read her tale, both for her humanity and her author credentials.  I also realize just how much of herself she puts into her fiction books; I have commented in previous reviews of her work how impressive her professional credentials might be – having read her life story, I am now in no doubt; Lin’s medical career is an outstanding one, and there are a great number of similarities between Lin and her recurring heroine Lindsey McCall, both in terms of their professional experiences and personal traumas; I will, in future, view Ms. McCall’s adventures in an entirely new light.  I also have confirmed now that Lin‘s vast pool of knowledge and experience to draw from is genuine, and most of it her own.

This is an extremely well written book, completely different in pace to Lin’s novels.  It is almost as if the fiction is Lin’s “work” voice, and this is her “true” voice – a very pleasant and endearing one at that; I loved reading it.  Lin is an extremely talented wordsmith, an attribute more apparent in this book of genuine love, perhaps, than her fiction.  I know she will hate me for saying this, and perhaps I am nit-picking, but I feel the punctuation could do with a little polish, otherwise, the prose of this book is perfect.  It is not until the two-thirds point that the language of religion begins proper, but it is not rhetoric – Lin does not preach, but simply narrates her own studies of faith and theology in depth (being Lin, of course, she researched her decision to join the Catholic church thoroughly).  Still, I have to confess that it was around this point that the book became nonsensical to me; this is not down to Lin’s pen – indeed, at these points she is ever more eloquent – but, instead, because of my own inability to comprehend faith; absolution seems to me the main reason people return to faith in middle age, but, as somebody free of guilt in life, the whole concept of it, to me, seems absurd.  Unfortunately (and unfairly, I confess) were I more open to religion, and felt more affiliated to her in this respect, I believe I would have scored Lin the full five stars for her truly excellent writing.

One thing us writers can relate to is Lin’s perhaps fundamental underlying issue: that of an arrogant child not just resolving, but expecting, to achieve, until one day, in mid-life, we realize the path our life has taken has left a very large hole; Lin appears to have been fortunate enough to realize hers could be filled with faith, and though I don’t relate to that, I can certainly understand it.

In : Book Reviews 


Tags: lin-wilder  non-fiction  autobiography  god  religion  faith  christianity  remorse  redemption  catholic  non-fiction  memoir 
No Quarter: Dominium
***
Adventure

A Trinity of Wicked Tales
****
Horror


****
Short Stories

The Day I Made Good
****
Crime Drama

Complete Poetry of Norman AJ Berisford
*****
Poetry

Chuck the Rooster Loses His Voice
*****
Children's

Living Blind Without the Internet
****
Documentary

Devil in the Countryside
****
Historical Thriller

Monoland: Into the Gray Horizon
****
Fantasy

Corrosive
****
Horror

Woodiss is Willing
***
Comedy

The Fear
***
Horror

Superi: Reborn
*****
Fantasy

Murder in the Medical Center
***
Drama

The Eye of Nefertiti
****
Children's

Not Exactly Shakespeare
****
Comedy

Finding the Narrow Path
****
Biography

The Wyndham Werewolf
****
Short Stories

Only Human
***
Supernatural

What is Justice
**
Documentary

The Rat Tunnels of Isfahan
****
Historical Fantasy

I Once Was Lost But Now I'm Found
*****
Documentary

Never Too Late To Die
***½
Thriller

Understanding the Patterns of Your Life
***
Non-Fiction

Happiness is Just a Pill Away
*****
Comedy-Drama

The Lucky Winner
***
Crime Thriller

Endohuman
***
Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Tummy Rumble Quake
****
Children's

Monoland: The Shimmering Mist
****
Fantasy

Goodbye Butterfiles
*****
Psychology

Treading the Uneven Road
****
Short Stories

The Cuckoo Colloquium
****
Comedy

When I Turned Nineteen
*****
War Memoir

Fortuna and the Scapegrace
****
Comedy

Gnosis
***
Young Adult

Buy or Die
***
Satire

Faithful Servants
****
Drama

Ghost Dog
***
Crime Adventure

Looper
****
Drama

The Sinister Urge
**
Drama

Read to Succeed
*****
Self Improvement

Gone to the Dogs
*****
Comedy-Drama

Die Back
****
Fantasy

Finding My Platoon Brothers
*****
War Memoir

Delivering Virtue
****
Comedy

The Room Above
***
Fantasy

Written By Blood: Conviction
****
Action

The Day My Kisses Tasted Like Disorder
****
Poetry

I Have Demons
****
Short Stories

Victoria's Voice
****
Real Life

The Revolutionary Youth
*****
Drama

The Dog Thief
*****
Short Stories

Appointment With Fear
*****
Children's

Mermaids Are Real
***
Fantasy

Legends of Persia
***
Historical Fiction

My Groans Pour Out Like Water
*****
Poetry

47 Hours
*****
Political Thriller

The Road to Alexander
***
Historical Fiction

Father Divine's Bikes
****
Drama

Winning With Data
*****
Business

Aquila
****
Historical Fiction

Lions, Leopards and Storms, oh my!
***
Children's

Sparrowhawk on the Horizon
***
Historical Fiction

The Warehouse Tour
***
Short Stories

Feast of Sapphires
****
Poetry

The Night Alphabet
*****
Short Stories

Just Another Girl's Story
***
Autobiography

No-one Listens
***
Poetry

The Roving Mind
*****
Science

Malthus Revisited
***
Suspense/Thriller

My Weight Loss Journey
****
Self-Help

Change of Chaos
****
YA / Fantasy

Fish Farm
****
Thriller

Songs to New York
****
Short Stories

I Claudia
*****
Historical Fiction

God: Challenges From Philosphy and Science
****
Philosophy

The Friar's Lantern
*****
Role Play

Crazy About Kurt
****
Comedy

Dark Cure
****
Action

Translucent Boy
***
Sci-Fi Fantasy

Dart by Dale Renton
****
Sci-fi Fantasy

Monoland: Beyond the Monochrome
*****
Fantasy

Rocky Mountain Noir
***
Comedy

Rocky Mountain Noir
***
Science Fiction

Foster Care To Millionaire
****
Memoir

Flow Like A River
*****
Thriller

Secrets To Being Amazing
****
Self-Help

13 Dark Tales: Collection Two
****
Short Stories

Myth Agent
****
Fantasy

Tags

1990s a-scholte abortion abuse action addiction afterlife age ajay-shankar alcoholism alejandro-de-gutierre alexander-the-great alphabet american-comedy american-graffiti american-history ancient ancient-history animal-abuse animal-rescue animal-welfare anthology anthony-michaelides anthony-simola anti-hero anxiety arabian artificial-intelligence atlantis australia autobiography bereavement biography bittersweet bizarre blind bo-wu boats books borneo brian-kindall british business cameron-k-moore catholic cats chad-lee-erway challenge childhood childhood-trauma childrens-books christ christian christianity christina-williams christopher-adam clinchandhill clint-thurmon cody-mclain coffee-break cognitive collection colonialism comedy coming corporate-crime cory-barclay coup creatures crime criminal-justice crm cruelty cynical dale-renton dark data data-analytics david-donachie david-grad david-lee-fish demons denise-wijayaratne detective diary dictatorship diet disability dog-rescue dogs drama drugs dwayne-gill dystopian ea-minin earthquake ecological educational egyptian emergency emmanuella-hristova emotional empire environmental erotic espionage faith fallacious-rose family fantasy felicia-watson fiction fiona-green flash-fiction foster-care frances-bloom frances-newton friendship frontier funny futuristic gangster george-dalrymple george-koloukis glyn-haynie gm-o'connor god gods golf gory greg-hickey health health-and-fitness heartbreaking heather-beal henry-woodiss high-school historical historical-fiction history holistic horror illustrated immigrants incest international internet ira irish j-kariuki jacinta-jade jennifer-macaire jesus jill-kearney john-simpson journal jungle justice ka-cummins kurt-cobain kyla-ross l-a-macfadden lady-byrd laura-eckert laura-hergane laura-koerber legendary leigh-holland life lin-wilder lindsay-mccall lindsey-mccall lorna-brown loss lynne-renoir marc-curtis-little maria-luisa-lang marine-life mark-guillerman martin-freznell mathematics matt-nagin medical medical-drama medieval melodrama memoir mermaids michael-a.-greco michael-conlon michael-irwin michael-r-martin military mind mjl-evans monoland monologue motivational myrtle-brooks mystery mythical native-american natural-disaster navy new-jersey new-york nick-dream nirvana non-fiction norman-aj-berisford northern-ireland novella nutrition observations of oppression otherworld outback pablo-palazuelo persia personal-development peter-learm pharaoh philosophy pirates platoon poetry political political-thriller pop-culture prison pro-life psychology pulp-fiction purgatory puzzle race racial rae-louise rainforest reading real-life redemption reference regime relationship religion religious remorse revolutionary richard-bunning richard-hacker rick-hall robert-kingett role-play roman romania rural sailing sailors satire sci-fi science scientist seafaring self-confidence self-esteem self-help series sexual sexual-harassment short-stories sigal-haber sitcom slavery slice-of-life society sociopath soldier special-forces sports spy-thriller stage-fright stan-skrabut steve-bassett study superhero supernatural superstition surreal suspense swashbuckling teamwork technology teen teenager the-troubles theodor theological thriller tim time-travel tom-hoffman tomi-farrell torture tough-guy tragedy trilogy true-story tv-shows undersea vampire venezuela ventskevitch veteran vietnam vietnam-war vigilante vince-rockston violent walt-sautter war war-memoir weight-loss well-being werewolf western white wildlife will-link yorkshire young-adult
Author Matt McAvoy
Website designed and created by MJV SERVICES, UNITED KINGDOM 2016 - all rights reserved.
*The author has established copyright for all work featured on this website.