A Good Book Ruined

I have been enjoying the Sisters, Ink series of books by Rebeca Seitz.  So far, it’s a series of three books (with a fourth due out in June) about four adopted sisters who solve all of life’s problems while scrapping.  Boyfriends, marriages, babies, step-mothers–they’ve covered it all.  Nice, light-hearted books, written from a Christian perspective (their daddy is a preacher), about women in various stages of life:  married with children; married without, but trying; newly married; engaged; single; career woman; stay-at-home-mom–it’s all there.  And two of my favorite activities are reading and working on scrapbooks, so what’s better than reading about people who like to scrapbook? A match made in heaven, as far as me and books.

But the latest book, Scrapping Plans, left a sour taste in my mouth, and made me wonder about the author, and whether or not she even considered her audience before including a completely unnecessary scene.  It started with a somewhat sarcastic reference to a beautiful old Lutheran church that might not allow the non-Lutheran characters to be married there.   That rankled a bit, because A.) I’m Lutheran, and don’t like sarcasm directed toward my church; and 2.) I don’t think you should you should get married at church because it’s pretty, I think you should get married at *your* church–you don’t just wander around town looking for the prettiest building for your wedding. But, I was willing to let that go.

A few pages later, however, I came upon this:

“Well, evidently the mother church of the denomination in the western hemisphere will allow us into their church since Darin’s family has devoted their lives to Martin Luther.  I don’t get it since Luther himself told those who agreed with him specifically not to form a separate denomination.”

This was beyond unnecessary.  It’s just dripping with sarcasm. I’m assuming either the author or someone she knows had a problem with a Lutheran church and a wedding–perhaps she (or a friend) found a church that was pretty, and wanted to get married in it, but because neither she nor her fiance was Lutheran, had to twist some arms to have the marriage performed there.

I don’t like it when authors take up personal grudges in books for no good reason–this scene, and the other reference added absolutely nothing to the story. Without these references, the story still would have been good, there would still have been problems to solve (because this wasn’t even one of the problems the sisters were attempting to solve while scrapping), nothing would have been missing from the book at all.  It was that gratuitous. There was no reason to put it in the book at all, other than the author was ticked off, and wanted to vent.

But did it occur to her that by including this scene, she may have alienated some of her readers?  Surely it must have occurred to her that she might have some Lutheran readers–I can’t be the only one. And did she really think that comments like that, especially when she has no concept of what Lutheranism really is (I would hardly say that I have devoted my life to Luther, the man), would endear her books to her readers?

I’ll probably buy the last book in the series, because I can’t stand having an unfinished set, but I doubt I’ll be buying anything else written by her.  I don’t care to waste my money on books where the author not only has a personal vendetta, but also mis-represents an entire denomination with her snarkiness!

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