Book Review - The Law of Moses by Amy Harmon

7 Dec 2014




If I tell you right up front, right in the beginning that I lost him, it will be easier for you to bear. You will know it’s coming, and it will hurt. But you’ll be able to prepare. 

Someone found him in a laundry basket at the Quick Wash, wrapped in a towel, a few hours old and close to death. They called him Baby Moses when they shared his story on the ten o’clock news – the little baby left in a basket at a dingy Laundromat, born to a crack addict and expected to have all sorts of problems. I imagined the crack baby, Moses, having a giant crack that ran down his body, like he’d been broken at birth. I knew that wasn’t what the term meant, but the image stuck in my mind. Maybe the fact that he was broken drew me to him from the start. It all happened before I was born, and by the time I met Moses and my mom told me all about him, the story was old news and nobody wanted anything to do with him. People love babies, even sick babies. Even crack babies. But babies grow up to be kids, and kids grow up to be teenagers. Nobody wants a messed up teenager. And Moses was messed up. Moses was a law unto himself. But he was also strange and exotic and beautiful. To be with him would change my life in ways I could never have imagined. Maybe I should have stayed away. Maybe I should have listened. My mother warned me. Even Moses warned me. But I didn’t stay away. 

 And so begins a story of pain and promise, of heartache and healing, of life and death. A story of before and after, of new beginnings and never-endings. But most of all . . . a love story.


“There are laws. There are rules. And when you break them, there are consequences. Laws of nature and laws of life. Laws of love and laws of death.” 

Once again I find myself in an awkward situation where all my buddies love a book and I'm that black sheep in the pack, yikes. Honestly I was really looking forward to love this book after seeing all the 5-stars reviews and even when I wasn't even planning to read it, I still caved in because I've heard about this author's writing and the emotional punch she brings to her reads. But sadly, I didn't get a lot of that from this one and this is likely to be a case of my preference, so please don't take my rating/opinion for what it is :)


 Prior to picking this one up, I've only read 2 early reviews and in one of them, I was already made aware of that one element that was incorporated in the book which wasn't hinted in the blurb or overall genre itself. So to say that I went in blindly without knowing what laid ahead is not true, the only question would be HOW it was gonna be incorporated into it. And for what it's worth, I did enjoy that part of the read and made it a rather compelling story for me. 

 But sadly a whole lot of other elements in the book just didn't work for me. I know this puts me in an absolute minority when I say that I couldn't get into the author's writing. Being my first read from her, I really didn't have much expectations but from the first 20% itself, I struggled getting into the story. Her writing style was a little too rich for my liking and there was too much inner monologue and so little dialogue. I find myself spacing out from the story and kept wondering if the story was going to move at a pace that seems rather dragged out. 

 Also another thing I didn't anticipate were the heavy biblical references lying around this book. Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against them but at times, I found them to be a little off-putting when they spurted out of nowhere I was rather taken aback when Moses' grandma came off so strongly about reminding Moses on how he was named after a prophet and in the Bible, how Moses parted waters and etc. Maybe I should have seen it coming judging by the title itself but I think it would've been more fair if readers were made aware before jumping into this one. Character-wise, I have to admit that I couldn't connect to both MCs for the most parts. 

The connection between both MCs seemed to have just transpired out of nowhere; one moment they seemed to be distant and in another, it escalated so quickly. I was hoping for more of a substantiated connection but I didn't get any of it here at all. At one point of the story, I had to ask a buddy about why Moses keep saying he can't love anyone? Is it because of his 'cracked' brain? Is it because how he has been perceived by everyone? . It was tough cracking Moses even given with his POV & it frustrated me that there wasn't a solid reason enough for me to buy his hot and cold behaviour towards Georgia. 

 But I think the major plotkill for me was at the midway when the author decided to drop the pregnancy bomb of Georgia. And that's RIGHT before the time jump of 7 years. Honestly, this trope being thrown in for the idea of a second chance romance just didn't entirely appeal to me. What I didn't enjoy more was that it would take Georgia & Moses's dead child to finally get Moses to find back Georgia. So in a way, had they not conceived a child, Moses would have never bothered to fight back for Georgia? He would have gone on with his life and never looked back?. Honestly, this made me even more hesitant to buy their love story. 

 Apart from the issues I had with the book, there were still redeeming qualities that still managed to grab my heartstrings. It was completely heartbreaking to read a certain scene and I'm sure which evoked a lot of emotions from the readers. My favorite parts of the book were how Eli, their dead son kept communicating with Moses. I thought that was a nice touch to the PNR element brought into this read. Completely heartwarming yet heartbreaking. And the "5 Greats" theme was another lovely addition to this book that I believe everyone can take away from this read.


 Overall I appreciated how the book conveyed a powerful underlying message of forgiveness and the varying colors of life may it be anger, sadness or happiness. 

 While I felt that it was a truly interesting premise that the author explored, sadly the other parts of the book just didn't work for me. However, I believe fans of this author's writings would surely enjoy this read and please don't let my review/rating deter you from picking this one up :) 

No comments:

Post a Comment