I received this book for free from the TLC Book Tours in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The Man He Never Was Published by Thomas Nelson on February 20, 2018
Genres: Adult, Christian Fiction, Christian Fiction, Contemporary, Emotions & Feelings, Magical Realism, Physical & Emotional Abuse
Source: TLC Book Tours
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What if You Woke up One Morning and the Darkest Parts of Yourself Were Gone?
Toren Daniels vanished eight months back, and his wife and kids have moved on—with more than a little relief. Toren was a good man but carried a raging temper that often exploded without warning. So when he shows up on their doorstep out of the blue, they’re shocked to see him alive. But more shocked to see he’s changed. Radically.
His anger is gone. He’s oddly patient. Kind. Fun. The man he always wanted to be. Toren has no clue where he’s been but knows he’s been utterly transformed. He focuses on three things: Finding out where he’s been. Finding out how it happened. And winning back his family.
But then shards of his old self start to rise from deep inside—like the man kicked out of the NFL for his fury—and Toren must face the supreme battle of his life.
In this fresh take on the classic Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, James L. Rubart explores the war between the good and evil within each of us—and one man’s only chance to overcome the greatest divide of the soul.
“Rubart will leave readers inspired . . .” —Publishers Weekly STARRED review for The Long Journey to Jake Palmer
The Man He Never Was had an interesting blurb–a reimagined Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde in a Christian fiction setting where the main character Toren Daniels is a man on the precipice of disaster. A former NFL football player who was well-known for his explosive temper, Toren disappeared eight months earlier and no one has heard from him since. But then Toren wakes up in a hotel room, his driver’s license and credit card are the only things of personal value with him. He has no idea where he’s been or what he’s done for the past months, he just wakes up knowing that the rage that usually simmered beneath the surface wasn’t there anymore. Only wanting to reconcile with his wife and two children, he sets out on a path of spiritual discovery until he’s the man that his family deserves.
I enjoyed Toren as a character, and I truly felt his need to be closer to God and to place his trust in Him for things to work out as they should. Toren’s confusion and drive to get the answers he seeks for why he’s no longer angry led him from his Pacific Northwest home to a peaceful island get away and back. He grows as we explore his past as a physical and psychological victim of abuse, and as he faces what he’s actually become in his family’s eyes. With help of a healing center and a few cryptic spiritual teachers that gently guide him towards his better self, Toren must go through dark times before the light within all of us can be revealed.
The Man He Never Was really makes you question if someone can change who they are for the better, and if is it a journey that can be accomplished alone. Luckily for Toren, there’s a cast of secondary characters to challenge him and push him towards the truth for himself.
I give The Man He Never Was a four out of five. This is a clean book focusing on the inner transformation of a man, figuring out why he’s the way he is and letting it all go. My only real complaint is that the children sounded too much like adults, so it was hard to believe that the kids were under ten years old. All of the characters spoke of God and their relationship with Christianity is front and center, which in such a diverse world that we live in today, was a bit unrealistic. I really loved the twist at the end, and I didn’t see it coming.
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About James L. Rubart
James L. Rubart is a professional marketer, speaker, and writer. He serves on the board of the Northwest Christian Writers Association and lives with his wife and sons in the Pacific Northwest.
Connect with James L. Rubart
James L. Rubart’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS for THE MAN HE NEVER WAS:
Tuesday, March 20th: @createexploreread
Wednesday, March 21st: What is That Book About
Thursday, March 22nd: Laura’s Reviews
Friday, March 23rd: The Sketchy Reader
Tuesday, March 27th: Reviews from the Heart
Wednesday, March 28th: @acozyreader
Thursday, March 29th: Cheryl’s Book Nook
Thursday, March 29th: Write Read Life
Monday, April 2nd: From the TBR Pile
Tuesday, April 3rd: @bookmusings
Tuesday, April 3rd: Bewitched Bookworms
Wednesday, April 4th: Mel’s Shelves
Thursday, April 5th: Read Eat Repeat
Friday, April 6th: @willbakeforbooks
Monday, April 9th: Fiction Aficionado
Tuesday, April 10th: Diary of a Stay at Home Mom
Wednesday, April 11th: @somekindofalibrary
Thursday, April 12th: Patricia’s Wisdom
TBD: Splashes of Joy