The Long Highway Home
By Elizabeth Musser
Published by Create Space
ISBN# 978-1542362726
408 Pages

Back Cover: Sometimes going home means leaving everything you have ever known.
When the doctor pronounces ‘incurable cancer’ and gives Bobbie Blake one year to live, she agrees to accompany her niece, Tracie, on a trip back to Austria, back to The Oasis, a ministry center for refugees that Bobbie helped start twenty years earlier.  Back to where there are so many memories of love and loss…

Bobbie and Tracie are moved by the plight of the refugees and in particular, the story of the Iranian Hamid, whose young daughter was caught with a New Testament in her possession in Iran, causing Hamid to flee along The Refugee Highway and putting the whole family in danger. Can a network of helpers bring the family to safety in time?  And at what cost?

Filled with action, danger, heartache, and romance, The Long Highway Home is a hymn to freedom in life’s darkest moments.

REVIEW: This author has penned a riveting, beautiful inspiring story of courage, healing, and faith. She showed how God uses ordinary people to do extraordinary things. It made me look at the world with fresh eyes and see things I hadn’t noticed before. It made me realize how quickly things can change. I wondered how I would act given the same scenario. Would I be as strong as the refugees facing this life-threatening event? I had read the author notes where she tells readers this novel was based real life stories. It made what Hamid faced heartbreaking and surreal. The author is currently a missionary in France and talks passionately about the courageous people she’s met and how their faith has gotten them through unimaginable situations.

There are two heart-felt stories running hand and hand throughout this book. One is of two women; Bobbie and her niece Tracie. They set out on a urgent pilgrimage after Bobbie is diagnosed with cancer. They’ve talked about going on this trip for years. They plan on making this dreams come true. Bobbie is excited to finally take Tracie to The Oasis. There they learn about a refugee named Hamid. He is running for his life along The Refugee Highway. His family is hiding trying not to be captured. There are flashbacks of Bobbie’s life as she remembers her time at The Oasis. She shares with Tracie some heart-wrenching stories that changed the path of Bobbie’s life.

Here is a peek at the refugee, “Hamid listened to a radio program, broadcast from The Netherlands but in his tongue. The voice in the box spoke of the Bible, of Christ – Isa al Masi – of hope, of a Savior. Hamid’s heart swelled to hear the words, foreign words, dangerous words! Why was he drawn to them so? These were the words that had forced him to flee in the first place.”

Hamid was trying to become a refugee in another country. The definition of a refugee – a person who has been forced to leave their country in-order-to escape war, persecution, or natural disaster. A refugee has a well-founded fear of persecution for reasons of race, religion, nationally, political opinion or membership in a particular social group.”

Hamid and his daughter have accepted Christ as their savior. Hamid’s wife is not so sure about all this. Why bother when it’s so dangerous? There are suspenseful nail-biting moments for Hamid and his family as they try to get to safety.

Bobbie shares a story with Tracie,” Fred was part of The Barracks team…He trained with us in the US and planned on smuggling, like the rest of us, but when the rubber hit the road, he just couldn’t do it. He found he couldn’t lie, couldn’t keep a straight face and swear that he wasn’t carrying anything illegal into the East. So here he was – stuck in Vienna for a two-year term of service, with a huge amount of guild because his religious convictions wouldn’t let him smuggle Bibles.” …

….” Fred started visiting the refugee camp in our village, and before long he was teaching the women and children to read and write in English…pretty soon many who came from Communist countries were learning about Jesus and wanting to be Christians.”

Several times my throat tightened and tears ran down my cheeks as this author described unimaginable grace in the midst of brutal and inconceivable conditions. It was stunning and humbling to see how hope shone through the dark places. I was encouraged at how hope and healing sprang up despite tremendous pain and suffering they encountered. The reader could clearly see the source of hope and healing, was Christ Jesus! The situation reminded me of a book I read years ago, called God’s Smuggler by Brother Andrews.

This novel grabbed me from the start and never let me go. I'm so thankful for the opportunity to read this powerful faith building; life changing book. It’s an inspiring story of courage, faith, survival, and hope. I couldn’t stop thinking about this story and its characters when I closed the book. I honestly think it's this author’s finest work! This would make a great book club selection.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the Publisher and The Book Club Network. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
COO of TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
The Book Club Network blog
Book Fun Magazine
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