I just finished the book, Stand By Me, written by Neta Jackson, and I feel like I’ve just been to a reunion with my Yada Yada Sisters! Stand By Me is the first book in Jackson’s new series, SouledOut Sisters, and it features Avis Douglass whom I’ve always admired in past novels but felt inferior to until I got to know her in this novel! She is just like me, juggling responsibilities at home, church and work and has an adult daughter with a lot of drama.
The story unfolds around a new character, Kat, studying for her Master’s Degree at a Chicago university. Her life becomes intertwined with Avis when she attends SoldOut Community Church and moves with her friends into the same apartment building as Avis. Life situations begin to emerge and you find yourself dealing with forgiveness, church life, racial tension, praying and surrendering, homelessness, abuse, gossip, and death. You find yourself thinking about important questions like “What attracted me to Jesus in the first place and choosing the Christian life?” and “How do I Pray in Desperate Circumstances?”
As in all of Neta Jackson’s novels, her mandate is clear. The Body of Christ is made up of different personalities, colors, cultures, and those differences add flavor to Christianity. We need Jesus and we need each other.
Jackson’s novels are refreshing the way she reels you in to the story line with colorful descriptions of Chicago life and characters that come alive as you think of your own close friendships. I look forward to the next SouledOut Sisters book.