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Redeeming Love

4.50  ·  Rating details ·  230,835 ratings  ·  12,683 reviews
California’s gold country, 1850. A time when men sold their souls for a bag of gold and women sold their bodies for a place to sleep.

Angel expects nothing from men but betrayal. Sold into prostitution as a child, she survives by keeping her hatred alive. And what she hates most are the men who use her, leaving her empty and dead inside.

Then she meets Michael Hosea. A man
Paperback, 479 pages
Published 2007 by Multnomah (first published 1991)
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Ragtimes2 Garnes This is my favorite book. I did a summer book club and this was one of the books we read and discussed. I found the beginning of the book heart breaki…moreThis is my favorite book. I did a summer book club and this was one of the books we read and discussed. I found the beginning of the book heart breaking but I was captivated and could not put it down until I completed the entire book. I passed it on to my daughters because I wished for them the same healing, the main character experienced. Four of my daughter, I rescued from abuse. In the same manner the oldest child was not accepting of me as was the main character of the one who loved her. Reading this book also thought me lessons about love. I learned that it is not until we are mature enough and ready to receive love that we can accept and return love. We live and learn.(less)
Nikita Maria (reclaiming my literacy) I wish, but I also recognize that this will be incredibly difficult to adapt for two reasons:
1. It'll be too "sexual" for Christian audiences
2. It'll …more
I wish, but I also recognize that this will be incredibly difficult to adapt for two reasons:
1. It'll be too "sexual" for Christian audiences
2. It'll be too Christian for secular audiences

If you want to keep the movie somewhere in the ballpark of PG-13, a good deal of content will need to be cut--or the directors/editors will have to be creative in how they navigate those scenes. Even as a reader, there are certain scenes that made me blush, and I'm a New Yorker (virtually nothing makes us blush anymore). If anything, I could see this going the same route as The Red Tent and being adapted as a mini-series for a network like Lifetime, no more than 4 parts. The sad thing is that a lot of the spiritual content might get toned down in the process...I'd be more in favor of a Christian production company buying the rights and figuring out how to navigate the "sex scenes." If fans of the book watch the movie and complain about the toned down sexual content (which isn't graphic in the book to begin with), then it goes to show where their priorities are. (less)

Community Reviews

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Average rating 4.50  · 
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 ·  230,835 ratings  ·  12,683 reviews

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Mar 14, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Any/all Romance readers
Recommended to Auntee by: Kathrynn M.
I'm not even going to attempt to review this one because I doubt that I could do it justice. Besides, there's over a thousand reviews of this book on GR (hard to believe--I must have been one of the few people who haven't read this book)! Anyway, it was definitely the best book I've read all year, and probably one of the best books I've EVER read. It was easy to read (the story flowed very smoothly), yet emotionally, it was very difficult to read. Parts of the book just tore me up inside, and I ...more

5 Inspiring Stars!! I'm soooo happy!! Where's a box of tissues when you need them?? I have to listen to the end again. Oh my, I can't stop crying!! Michael...he is the power of love!!


No review I could ever do, would give this book the justice it is so deserving of! You have to experience it to understand all the meaning that it holds. Thank you to KarLyn who was the first to tell me about this book, and then all my other friends who encouraged me to read it. It's an amazing journey I will NE
Kristin (KC)
Utterly heart wrenching. Gripping. Riveting. Extraordinary...I could go on and on and still not justify the magnitude of this story's brilliance— what it means, what it stands for, and how deeply it has affected me.

Reading Redeeming Love was an intensely humbling and inspirational experience. It isn't about drama or angst or sexy loves is a powerful, eye-opening story focused on faith and redemption; on rising up from the dust of despair and finding yourself worthy. It's about the u
Natalie Vellacott
I didn't get very far into this before realising that it was R rated. Luckily I got it free so haven't wasted any money and can happily throw it away. One of the most troubling things about this book is that there are a number of reviews from non-Christians commenting on the graphic nature of this book and stating that they wouldn't have thought the writer was a Christian. That alone explains why Christian authors need to be careful with their content, they are representing Jesus.

I am aware that
5 stars
"Love cleanses, beloved. It doesn't beat you down. It doesn't cast blame. My love isn't a weapon. It's a lifeline. Reach out and take hold, and don't let go.”

Honestly, I almost never read historical romance. It just doesn’t interest me as much as contemporary does. I saw this on my libraries page and it had been recommended to me in the past, so I picked up the audiobook. I’m so glad I did. This book was fantastic and I loved it so much!

This book takes place in California in
I think the purpose of this book was overshadowed by the very dark subject matter. A lot of people have called this a Christian Romance, I find that very hard to believe. The story is about a young girl sold into prostitution at the age of eight who later is rescued by a man named Michael. The books goes into shocking, disturbing detail of the sad life she led. She run’s away from her devoted husband multiple times, which also got old. The whole thing was very depressing and I only continued to ...more
Jennifer Kyle
Dec 16, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
Please note: I read the Kindle version which apparently is the clean Christian version. The original paperback is what I should have read. Darn.

4 Angel Stars

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This is a Christian based love story about a prostitute finding redemption and spirituality with her farmer husband. This book quotes a lot of scripture and the story itself is based on the Bible story of Hosea and Gomer.

Set in California in the 1950’s during the gold rush, Sarah is working as a high priced prostitute after y
Sep 26, 2011 rated it did not like it
I recieved this as a part of the First Reads program.

I was repulsed by this book.

It's supposed to be a Christian romance novel. Full disclosure, I'm an atheist, so I wasn't expecting to exactly fall in love with the book. But I found the concept of the story of Hosea being retold during the Gold Rush interesting, or else I wouldn't have picked it up.

So you may ask, why was I so repulsed by this book? Looking past the forced marriage, rape, beatings and child rape described in the book. Also look
Jun 12, 2013 rated it really liked it

4.5 stars

Redeeming Love is one of those must-read romances worth reading at least once


There are two versions of Redeeming Love. This is a review of the original 1991 version. The 1997 version is basically the same as the original, but was edited to remove any descriptions of the love scenes and any coarse language to make it suitable for the Christian market.

Based on the Book of Hosea from the Bible, where God told the prophet, Hosea to marry the prostitute, Gomer -

"Go marry a prostitute
Hm, hard review to write! I appreciate the story of redemption Rivers set out to tell, but I didn't like how she went about it. The story was riveting at first, drawing me in, so that I read the first 100 pages without even setting it aside. But I had to lay the book down to complete a task, and as I did it, I realized that I was feeling...dirty.

Truly, a great deal of the book is focused on sordid and dirty details. Even after we are away from the subjects of child rape, human trafficking, auct
Amy | Foxy Blogs
*Just finished doing a re-read via audiobook this time (September 2020). Still my all-time favorite book. I'm excited that next year there will be a movie of this book releasing.

**Read this book about 10 years ago. Re-reading it now! (March 14th, 2013) I finished and this book is still my all-time favorite book! Deserves more than 5 stars.*

This book is based on the love story from the Bible of Hosea and Gomer. Gomer is a prostitute and Hosea is a Godly man told to marry her. It's their struggle
Aug 16, 2012 rated it did not like it
There are many things, good and bad, that could be said about this book, but I have only one thing to say.

Forced sex is rape. Every time. When her brother in law drives her through the wilderness and commands her to have sex with him or he will abandon her there, he is using physical and emotional force. That is pure rape.

What makes me sick is that she has to "find forgiveness" for this, that he never repents, that the book never recognizes rape for what it is. Especially after all the rape and
Dec 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites

She thought she had been saved by his love for her, and in part she had been. It had cleansed her, never casting blame. But that had been only the beginning. It was loving him in return that had brought her up out of the darkness.

Wow. So much to say about this book. And I don’t even know where to begin. The emotions incited were overwhelming. My chest still hurts from the feelings I have. I must say, I don’t cry often when I read. And when I do, it is more often out of sorrow
Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers has undeniably earned a coveted spot on my top bookshelf of classically flawless stories. This is a book that I will probably find myself reading over and over again until it simply falls apart at the seams. Such a beautiful love story that I could not separate myself from both mentally and emotionally.

I read this book while I was traveling, and I truly don’t know how I made my connector flights or found my departing gate terminals, or even who sat next to me
Mar 24, 2009 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Readers looking for frontier inspirational romance or a retelling of the Book of Hosea
Recommended to Eastofoz by: Auntee
Shelves: fiction
This is a difficult book to rate because at times it’s a 1 and then a 3 and I can even see how readers could give it a 5 star rating. It’s an inspirational romance that at times is quite heavy on the religious aspect in my opinion. If the idea of a kind of self-sacrifice to the extreme that doesn’t seem to benefit anyone apart from God (but even then that’s debatable) appeals to you, then you’ll probably like this book. I didn’t particularly enjoy it, but I could appreciate it.

It’s not the great
Nenia ✨ I yeet my books back and forth ✨ Campbell

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I am not religious, so my review of this inspirational romance will be coming from the perspective of a secular reader. Our theme read in the Unapologetic Romance Readers group for the month of May was "christian romance," and REDEEMING LOVE was actually my nomination. Francine Rivers is a name that gets bandied around a lot, not just in the christian fiction groups, but also in the historical romance groups in general. I was curious to
♡Karlyn P♡
wow, a very powerful story! I listened to this one on my iPod. I tried so hard not to cry (especially toward the end) but I finally had to pull over and wipe my eyes when it ended. So much grief, redemption and joy. A fantastic story that drew me in and kept me glued.

Its a historical romance set in mid 1800's gold country region of California. Angel is a damaged young woman working a brothel and struggling with many horrors from her past. Michael is a devout Christian who believes God wants him
Mar 27, 2017 rated it did not like it
DNF @ page 50

I was supposed to read this to page 200 as punishment for lost bet but I'm gonna be dishonorable scum and just bail out of it because I just can't go on with this. This book is probably good if you are into this kind of stuff but religious romance about redeeming love for anti-romantic, cynical atheist like me was just torture.
Lindsay - Traveling Sisters Book Reviews
Read this years ago and realized I hadn't rated it. Such a beautiful story! ...more
Jul 04, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sarah was the by-product of an affair between her mother and a wealthy married man - a father who was only interested in his mistress and wants nothing to do with his child. He eventually dumps them, and cut off from funds and family let's just say that life on the docks isn't easy. When she's left on her own, Sarah is sold to a pedophile and eventually into prostitution. The main focus of the story begins years later as Sarah (now called Angel) is most highly sought after prostitute in the Cali ...more
Stacia (the 2010 club)
Dec 04, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of books like Love Comes Softly
Recommended to Stacia (the 2010 club) by: Buddy read with Archaeologists Anonymous
Oh, if she could only be Eve again, a new creature in Paradise. Before the Fall.

3.5 stars. I had a full review typed out and accidentally closed my window without saving. Take 2 will have a couple of thoughts (and a very awesome quote) missing.

Michael and Sarah/Angel are destined to be together. Michael's prayers have led him to Angel, and when he sees her, he knows that she is the one he has been praying for. However, Michael is having a hard time convincing Angel of this. For Angel
Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
I can safely say that I should have never started this book.

I have heard about this book for ages. It pops up from time to time on friends' feeds, and with over 70,000 Goodreads ratings and over 1,600 Amazon ratings, I'd say it is a pretty popular book. When I saw this come up on NetGalley, I was hesitant to give this a try. However, the Kindle book costs $9.99, so I figured this was my only shot to see what all the fuss was about. I asked a few GR friends if they thought that this book was app
Jennifer Leighton
I feel like my heart has just been put through the wringer. Wow.

There are two versions of Redeeming Love: the original 1991 version, and the 1997 version that was sanitized to remove the coarse language and (very) mild love scenes to make it fit for the Inspirational market. I bought the original 1991 version, but even with it being the original, the story still has a strong religious bent, and the love scenes are not explicit but more implied.

To be honest, I put off reading this for a very lo
Peter Derk
Feb 09, 2012 rated it did not like it
Shelves: reviewed
Okay, before getting too far into reading this, understand that I only read this book because it was required of me for a book club. I wouldn't normally review something I felt this unkind towards because I would not finish it. Nor would I expect to like it.

Fair warning.

Redeeming Love is a part of the genre we like to call "Inspirational Fiction" where the word "Inspirational" is a more friendly and inclusive way to say "Jesus-y" or "religious" or, as I like to say it, "Jesus C fiction where the
Jul 21, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019-books
I know that this book is practically worshipped in Christian fiction circles but I there were a couple issues in it that really angered me - hence, the two star rating. If you love this book, you'll probably want to skip my review...but if you enjoy a thoughtful negative review (like me, lol) on!

(Thought I'd start with the positives.)

-Francine Rivers is a good writer and I went through the 400+ pages of Redeeming Love rather quickly because of that.
-Angel/Sarah was a good char
Redemption. This is a story about redemption.

I am not a person who is ever at a loss for words. It doesn't happen. Yet as I sit at my computer, wanting to write this review so badly, I am at a loss for words. The beauty and lasting impression this novel makes on the reader is hard to put into words. After reading Redeeming Love, I am emotionally exhausted. I have cried many tears, been angry, hurt, and horrified at the atrocities in this story, and yet have this silly grin on my face when I thin
5+++ Stars

An amazing and unforgettable love story that touched my heart deeply. I do not own the words that would do this book justice in a review. I highly recommend this to everyone.

Angel lost her innocence and hope as a young child. At only eight years old, she is sold to a man who rapes her and then forces her into a life of prostitution. Now, a young beautiful woman, she is full of bitterness and has little or no self-worth. There is no hope left in her soul. Her tragedy is heart breaking,
Oct 25, 2009 rated it really liked it
My 1st Xtian romance & may be my last. Nothing wrong w/ the writing, just not my cuppa. I was raised a baptized & confirmed Catholic who went to Catholic schools, but turned into a semi-atheist (plz don't cast rocks @ me). I still don't feel like converting after reading this book. The romance is above par & told in a smooth style, but I didn't buy the message the author tried to convey & it took some adjustment to see the words 'God' & whatnot popping up way too liberally. I thought the hero de ...more
Sep 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
My heart is heavy with emotions. What a beautiful, inspirational book. WOW!!! I had to stop several times because I was sobbing throughout the entire story and I cried long after I finished reading it. LOVELY!!!! For once I which I could adequately articulate how truly magnificent this book is!!!
Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
What a book. I think this book touched my heart completely. God must be speaking to me lately. I keep picking up books that are spirit based. I'm starting to listen.
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California Reading: Redeeming Love - Francine Rivers 1 1 Jul 10, 2021 10:36AM  
best love story i have read till now.... can you think of anything better ? 57 522 Oct 14, 2020 07:07AM  
Francine Rivers Fans 11 118 Oct 21, 2019 09:18AM  
Christian Ladies ...: Final thoughts 3 10 Aug 26, 2019 08:23AM  
Christian Ladies ...: Week 1: Chapter 8 2 7 Aug 23, 2019 08:19AM  
Christian Ladies ...: Week 1: Chapter 7 2 3 Aug 23, 2019 07:26AM  

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New York Times bestselling author Francine Rivers continues to win both industry acclaim and reader loyalty around the globe. Her numerous bestsellers include Redeeming Love, A Voice in the Wind, and Bridge to Haven, and her work has been translated into more than thirty different languages. She is a member of Romance Writers of America's coveted Hall of Fame as well as a recipient of the Lifetime ...more

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