My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Robert Whitlow’s “Tides of Truth” series comes to a satisfying conclusions with “Greater Love.”
The last in the series left Tami Taylor with some decisions to make about her future–both in the professional and personal arenas. “Greater Love” opens in Tami still struggling to find the answers and looking for wisdom and guidance not only from her friends and family but also from God. Readers of this series will recall that Tami was raised in a very conservative Christian denomination and throughout her life has looked to Bible and God for guidance in making decisions and how she relates to the world. That hasn’t changed with “Greater Love” and, in fact, becomes even more relevant to the on-going struggles Tami faces as the novel unfolds.
I’ve been a fan of Robert Whitlow since I discovered his books on the library shelf years ago and have eagerly awaited each new installment. Watching him grow as a writer has been a pleasure and “Greater Love” continues to show that growth. Whitlow’s greatest strength is his creation of real, compelling and authentic characters and situations. This extends beyond his central cast of Tami and her two suitors to everyone that Tami comes into contact with.
But the story of “Greater Love” isn’t just about Tami’s personal journey, though that may be of the greatest interest to a majority of readers. It’s also about the redemptive power of love and putting others before yourself and loving them as God intends. Whitlow shows us this in the story of Jessie, a teenage run away who is arrested for stealing a bag of doughnuts from a local bakery. Tami is assigned her defense and must try to uncover the truth behind the girl’s lies and fears. While the legal aspect of the story isn’t quite as solid as that displayed in previous Whitlow legal-driven thrillers like “The List,” the storyline effortlessly integrates with the personal and spiritual struggles Tami faces.
In the end, “Greater Love” is a satisfying conclusion to the “Tides of Truth” trilogy. As a character, I’d enjoy seeing more from Tami Taylor, but for now this part of her story is complete. And now I’m left waiting another year for whatever Whitlow has in mind next for his readers. Whatever it is, I’m sure it will be worth the wait.