Friday, August 21, 2009

Serenity (#4): RAVE-n-rant

Serenity (#4): RAVE-n-rant
By Realbuzz Studios
Publisher: Barbour Publishing
Published: 2006
ISBN-13: 9781593108731
96 pages

Synopsis from the back cover: Prayer makes a difference, they say. Try convincing Serenity of that... Serenity begins to share her soul with her Prayer Club friends--and is angered to find that, while they say they love Serenity, they don't always like her. The teen with the blue hair and attitude takes her frustrations to God, but soon decides He isn't listening...until a surprise ending makes Serenity realize there may be something to prayer after all.

Chapter 1: Okay, what's the deal here, God? I'm going to those stupid 12 step meetings... I'm praying like they tell me... I'm laying my problems out in front of you... SO HOW COME NOTHING'S HAPPENING?!?!

Genre: Manga. Inspirational. Young Adults.

What led you to pick up this book? I got the series (four books) for a really great bargain at Christianbook.com for just US$3.80.

Summary of plot minus spoilers: Please read the synopsis above.

What did you like most about the book? In this installment, Lori is really investing time in being Serenity's friend. It is also at this point that Serenity finds out her friends love her but it does not mean they like her. Lori explains that it does not mean they would stop loving or caring about her. Serenity is furious. She launched into a dialogue with herself, and ends up questioning God to whom she tries praying to but feels ignored.

Reflecting on this, I do wonder if God hears my prayers, too, but deep down inside I know He does even though I don't physically see it or feel it. I'm blessed with a great family. I'd overcome many problems in the past that couldn't have been solved without His intervention whether through the people He sent to help or through many other ways. I realize that when my motives are pure, I get what I asked for. For example, the opportunity to speak in a conference. I received not one, but two invitations this year. I wanted to do this not for self glory but to share my experience with other fellow administrative professionals.

Also, in one of the scenes where Sally notices that Serenity looks awfully lonely, I've felt that way too, but when I read His Word I felt comforted and cared for.

What did you think of the main character? Still the same' blue-haired teenager with issues but Serenity is willing to listen and is slowly changing for the better whether she realizes it or not.

What about the ending? I realize God is with working in us even though we don't always see it in the natural. He is already gently working with Serenity's character.

Here are some of the relevant Bible quotes in context with story, which are only quoted at the end of the book as reference:
When Serenity struggles with God's silence: "How long must I wrestle with my thoughts and every day have sorrow in my heart?" ~ Psalm 13:2 (NIV)

When Serenity's friend, Lori, texts her online (just when she thought nobody cares about her) and they have a heart-to-heart chat about their personal lives and God: " 'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.' " ~ Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)
Would you recommend this book? Yes. I would like to continue with the series but would need to buy the rest of them because I only have books 1 to 4. Once again, I would like to say that you can read this as a standalone without reading the first one in the series, but you'd miss out on Serenity's development.

About Realbuzz Studios:
Realbuzz Studios is an international group of artists and writers creating exciting and entertaining original stories for inspirational and christian readers.

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