Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Teaser Tuesdays: Fireproof (And, Book Review)

Here's page 145 of Fireproof by Eric Wilson:

She looked down, swung hair from her face, then met his gaze. "Let me be real clear with you about something..."

He waited.

She advanced two steps. "I do not love you."




Novelization by Eric Wilson
Screenplay by Alex and Stephen Kendrick
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Published: September 2008
ISBN-13: 9781595547163
320 pages

Synopsis from the back-cover: Growing up, his wife Catherine always dreamed of marrying a loving, brave firefighter...just like her father. Now, after seven years of marriage, she wonders when she stopped being "good enough." Countless arguments and anger have them wanting to move on to something with more sparks.

As they prepare for divorce, Caleb's father challenges him to commit to a 40-day experiment: "The Love Dare." Wondering if it's even worth the effort, Caleb agrees, for his father's sake more than for his marriage.

Surprised by what he discovers about the meaning of love, Caleb realizes that his wife and marriage are worth fighting for. His job is to rescue others. Now Captain Holt is ready to face his toughest job ever...rescuing his wife's heart.

First sentence: Dense smoke stretched between aisles of canned goods and wrapped its fingers around Captain Campbell's upright body.

Fireproof is an amazing faith-based story with inspiring characters and a challenging message. The marriage relationship is being taken lightly these days and when the going gets tough, divorce becomes the easy way out. This book is an eye (and heart) opener—Caleb Holt's resolve to save his marriage even though it is extremely hard for him and fight for the woman (Catherine Campbell) he loves—will dare us to rethink our own relationships.

The plot contains many suspenseful moments when Caleb risks his life in the line of duty, when a third party attempts to steal his wife’s heart at her place of work, and how temptations are very real in Caleb’s life (he is addicted to Internet pornography when his relationship with his wife has been going downhill for many years).

It is interesting to note that time and again, it is the lack of communication that causes relationships to fail. One party expects something from the other party, but without communicating it clearly to each other. In this story, both Caleb and Catherine are equally responsible for their marital problems.

Caleb’s father does a great job as his mentor and this goes to show that there are people out there who are able to help us if we only open our hearts to them. His father gives him a hand-written book called The Love Dare and challenged his son to follow through for 40 days. It is very difficult for Caleb because he is not seeing any results and Catherine seems untouched. In fact, she is unable to trust him and sends out opposite signals that she no longer cared.

Caleb also has a wonderful friend at work. Michael Simmons, his friend and lieutenant, constantly checks on him and he is one person Caleb could spill to. Michael brings about an interesting perspective about the fragility of marriage, which is depicted through the salt and pepper shakers example. The two shakers are glued together and if you try to pull them apart, you will break either one or both of them apart. It is thought-provoking what Simmons had said in response to Caleb's remark about marriages aren't fireproof: "Fireproof doesn't mean that a fire will never come, but that when it comes you'll be able to withstand it."

Movie stills are included in the book and it is nice to be able to see the visuals. Eric Wilson did a great job with the novelization, which is based on the screenplay by Alex and Stephen Kendrick (the team behind Facing the Giants and Flywheel). It is a story that made me cry and reflect.

When I read this book, I am reminded of what is truly important in my life and what it takes to protect it. Caleb has learned that "you never leave your partner, especially in a fire." "Fireproof" has multiple meanings in this book. I have placed an order for a copy of The Love Dare and is now hunting for the movie (watch trailer). I highly recommend this.

Marriage is not just about meeting the right person, but it is also about being the right person.

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