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Devil in the Dust

Narrated by: Lauri Jo Daniels
Length: 8 hrs and 50 mins
Categories: Romance, Westerns
3.5 out of 5 stars (3 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Their small Oklahoma town is dying. Lillian remembers how acres and acres of wheat once waved under jewel-blue skies. Now the dirt stretches across the flat land as far as she can see.

Emma's husband is missing. She keeps house, keeps her five children fed as best as she can, and keeps smiling as her hope fades. But when the days stretch to weeks, she faces the possibility that he will never come home. Left with the likelihood of losing their farm and the ever-present pangs of hunger, she is forced to consider opportunities that, under normal circumstances, she would never contemplate.

Jessie, Emma's oldest daughter, completes her tasks as if numb. Forced to wear her mother's shoes to avoid the humiliation of bare feet, she watches the dead dirt road for signs of life.

And then he comes.

His new car and shiny shoes and generous way with gifts and money catch Jessie's eye, much to the dismay of her mother...and much to the concern of the minister's wife, Lillian. He's too smooth, too willing to help, and much too eager to spend time with a girl less than half his age. But who is to say he is not the miracle they all prayed for?

Lillian and her husband stand by, helpless, as they realize that the winds carry more than one kind of evil and as they are all forced to decide where the evil lies: in hunger or in hope.

©2017 Heritage Beacon Fiction (P)2019 Heritage Beacon Fiction

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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Olahoma Dust Bowl story with mystery element

This story is about the trials and tribulations of the Owens family and the small town in the Oklahoma panhandle that they live in during the Dust Bowl years. (1930 - 1936)

I didn't notice that the genre was Christian Fiction until I'd received a free Audible credit in exchange for an honest review of the book. This isn't normally a genre that I gravitate toward, but the Christian element was handled with a light hand. It did not overpower the story.

I felt that the story was just a tad bit long. There are many, many scenes about having to sweep up dust from everywhere; placing wet clothes over noses and mouths; coughing up dust, etc. Most parts of the book were as brown and dreary as the surroundings and the era being described. If that was the author's intent, then the book was a success. I was weighed down by the unending hopelessness of the town, and the people.

This is a coming of age story, a murder mystery and a hero story about battling against all odds.

I listened to the audio version of the book, and there were a few production issues. Sometimes the narration sounded muted, or like the narrator was speaking from a long distance. Once it awhile while trying to produce a Southern accent (I think) the narrator sounded a bit like she was speaking around rocks in her mouth. The diction wasn't the clearest, and the pacing was a bit slow for me. Towards the end I turned up the narration speed to 1.20, and that improved the listening experience for me.

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And the Dust Blew

This is about the dust bowl in Oklahoma, a young girl and her family and a rich man taking advantage of the hardship of the towns people. The story was good but the narration was really bad. I was voluntarily provided this free review copy by the author, narrator or publisher.