- Paperback: 584 pages
- Publisher: Satya House Publications (October 5, 2012)
- ISBN-10: 1935874160
- Source: Publisher
As a young woman, Andie looked toward the church when finding a man to wed, figuring men of God are respectful of women and strive to provide for their families. She soon met a handsome young man, Joe Oliver. They couple wed right after she graduated from high school, promising to love and to cherish one another until their dying day. Unfortunately, the marriage and life she dreamed of having was just that, a dream.
Joe was dedicated to his church, overly so. The couple struggled to sustain their meager, poverty level livelihood, Joe giving most of their money and his time to the church. He soon began to work for Reverend Calvin Artury in his pursuit as a televangelist, and it wasn’t long before Andie realized the church played a more important role in his life than she. Joe soon became abusive toward Andie, blaming her for getting fat and, ultimately, getting pregnant. For it was Artury’s belief that men of God should not have children for then they would have to divide their time between the church and their family. The ministry team of the House of Praise was an incredibly close-knit, cult-like group, demanding subservience of the church and the ministry team. Artury would stop at nothing to command the faith of his followers resorting to a host of crimes, including murder, to protect the church’s reputation. As Andie got older and saw through the veil covering the evil-doings of the church, she stood up against Artury, finally truly seeing the evil that resided in this man of God.
Televenge is a true epic, not solely because of the book’s page count but mainly because of the path the main characters, namely Andie, follow throughout. It exposes the dark and desperate side of extremely conservative mega-churches that demand the unspeakable of its followers. All this said, this novel is much more than an examination of religion and mega-churches, instead it is, in essence, and exploration of Andie and her escape from this lifestyle.
At nearly 600 pages long, this book requires quite a bit of devotion of time. That said, the author’s incredibly eloquent writing pulls the reader in, commandeering their attention and time. A fast reader myself, I was so entranced by Andie’s story that I read this book, in its entirety, in one afternoon. Once you become involved in Andie’s bittersweet and painful story, it’s difficult to release oneself from her grasp. Admittedly, there were times when I grew extremely frustrated with Andie for her frequent returns to Joe and the life they shared, but recognized that she was so desperate to have the loving marriage she dreamed of she feel victim to Joe’s frequent promises of love and devotion.
While there were parts of the novel I felt should be edited a bit in an effort to draw in readers that might not be turned on by a novel of this magnitude, it balanced out in allowing the reader to become invested in the characters. That said, there were aspects that I felt were two descriptive while others should have been detailed further. Again, to me, this ultimately balanced itself out, culminating in a truly powerful novel. Recommended.
Thank you to TLC Book Tours for providing me an opportunity to review this title. Please be sure to check out the other stops in this tour.
Tags: mega churches, Review, televangalism