Tag Archives: James L. Rubart

Review: Soul’s Gate, by James L. Rubart

Soul's Gate by James Rubart | Well Spring series, book 1, book review, spiritual warfare, Christian fictionSoul’s Gate, by James L. Rubart (Harper Collins/Thomas Nelson Fiction, 2012)

Years ago, a tragic experience took Reese Roth out of a key role in spiritual warfare. Now, he must train and unite the four people who prophecy says are needed for the coming battle. It doesn’t help that two of them have a previous, unreconciled and painful history.

Soul’s Gate is the first book in the Well Spring series, and the trainees face significant pressure to turn away from the path to spiritual maturity and power. For the most part, even though the novel includes demonic opposition, it feels like a safe read because the trainees have Reese looking out for them. He usually senses their times of crisis and has a word or prayer to help them keep fighting.

It’s a compelling story, but what I most appreciate is the spiritual application to readers’ own lives. The characters experience things we likely never will – it’s fiction, after all – but there is clear (non-preachy) teaching on aspects of spiritual freedom that we can take for ourselves.

Much of the novel deals with the characters learning to recognize and refute the lies of their spiritual enemies, and the lies that they’ve internalized over the years. At one point, they’re challenged to write down every negative name or label that had ever applied to them, and to destroy the list before God, asking Him to give them new names.

There’s an ongoing focus on using Truth to refute and replace the lies. And throughout the novel, we see how spiritual healing and growth is a progression, not an instant fix.

These are things many of us already know, but there’s value in being reminded. Favourite lines (from when Reece asks Brandon a hard question and won’t back down):

“Why are you going for the throat, Reece?”

“Because the throat is where we swallow things. Good and bad. And I think you’ve been swallowing lies.” [Kindle location 2661]

Soul’s Gate won a 2013 Christy Award in visionary fiction and a 2013 INSPY Award for speculative fiction. James L. Rubart is a multi-published novelist, speaker, and consultant. His website says, “No matter where you’re at, I believe you can find life-altering freedom. Getting there is at the heart of all of my novels.” For more about the author and his books, visit jameslrubart.com. Or check out his blog: Going Deeper.

[Review copy from my personal library.]

Review: Book of Days, by James L. Rubart

Book of Days, by James L. RubartBook of Days, by James L. Rubart (B&H Publishing Group, 2011)

Cameron is in his early 30s but he’s losing chunks of his memory. His only hope lies in a cryptic mission from his father: to find the Book of Days. If such a thing exists, it holds everyone’s memories – past, present and future.

Supposedly this is God’s Book, based on Psalm 139:16. Cameron doesn’t believe in God, either, so that’s not much help. But his father did, and so did his wife.

Cameron’s quest forces him to turn to his dead wife’s foster-sister Ann for help, and it takes him to his father’s boyhood town, where secrets abound.

I enjoyed James Rubart’s writing style and the characters he created. There were plenty of clues, obstacles, and surprises along the way, as well as a few heart-warming moments. Looking back from the end, the only thing that doesn’t make sense to me is why a certain photo had been so carefully hidden.

The novel includes some well-turned phrases. Here’s my favourite:

…all he’d achieved was exhaustion. And a neck that felt like guitar strings tuned three octaves too high. [Kindle location 5415 in the Rooms/Book of Days/The Chair ebook box set]

Despite some of the New Age townsfolk, this is not an overly mystical novel, and I think it would suit anyone who enjoys a good contemporary story that includes Christianity, mystery and romance.

James L. Rubart is a writer and speaker whose website tag line is “Live free.” His most recent novel is The Five Times I Met Myself. For more about the author and his books, visit jameslrubart.com.

[Review copy from my personal library.]

Review: Rooms, by James L. Rubart

Rooms, by James L. RubartRooms, by James L. Rubart (B&H Fiction, 2010)

Micah Taylor has it all: prestigious business, penthouse condo, a girlfriend who’s his perfect match. Until he leaves Seattle for Cannon Beach, Oregon, to check into a house he inherited.

The house is everything he’d have wanted had he designed it himself – except for the location, stirring memories of childhood tragedy. And except for the mysterious rooms that suddenly appear.

Rooms is a supernatural tale of how God might lead a person to revisit “rooms” in his heart to bring healing and truth.

The more Micah begins to trust God, the more things in his world shift. Events he remembers haven’t happened. His status begins to slip. Micah’s new friend and confidant, Rick, assures him he’s not crazy, but Micah doesn’t know how much more he can take. He wants this deeper relationship with God… but at what cost?

Favourite line:

He walked toward the door on his toes, drawing short sips of air as if a deep breath would alert whatever was in the room to his presence. [Kindle location 1623]

Micah’s experiences wouldn’t happen in real life, but the principles and truth he learns about freedom in Christ translate directly into Christians’ lives today. So do the deceptions he faces. I found the story an intriguing way to look at the concept of our identity in Christ, and how life events and choices limit our spiritual growth – and how God may want to revisit those things to free us.

James L. Rubart is a writer and speaker whose website tag line is “Live free.” Rooms was his first novel. His most recent is The Five Times I Met Myself. For more about the author and his books, visit jameslrubart.com.

[Review copy from my personal library.]