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The Sinners' Garden

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4.20  ·  Rating details ·  326 ratings  ·  109 reviews
In a small town where hope and tragedy intermingle, things—and people—are not always what they seem.
Andy Kemp has suffered most of his life from both physical and emotional scars, and he believes that the scars on his face are proof that God doesn’t love him. Andy has grown into a withdrawn teenager, keeping to himself, until his uncle, ex-con Gerald Ripley, shows up and
...more
Paperback, 416 pages
Published December 24th 2013 by Thomas Nelson (first published December 17th 2013)
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Average rating 4.20  · 
Rating details
 ·  326 ratings  ·  109 reviews


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Gayle Pace
Feb 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
REVIEW-
This was an action filled book that I became so interested in that I couldn't turn those pages fast enough. There are a lot of lessons to be learned abut God in this book. No matter what we do or how bad they are, God loves us. God chooses people to lead because they are broken. You can go to the Bible and find many of God's followers who became great leaders even though they had done terrible things or had a physical impairment. All of us do things wrong and under God's grace we are
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Joan
Feb 12, 2014 rated it liked it
This is an OK read but it did not grab me. Sirls writes in the style of magical realism but for the Christian market. God talks prophetically to a teenager through an iPod. Flowers mysteriously appear and are related to people being changed. The spiritual emphasis is on God, in general. People are admonished to "believe" but only in God, not in the saving work of Christ. I felt the spiritual message was vague. There is forgiveness and healing of relationships and that was good. See my full ...more
Cyrus Webb
Nov 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
We live in a world that is so quick to count us out or put us down, depending on how it sees us.

How grateful we should be that our Heavenly Father sees who we are, knows what we have done and loves us unconditionally. In Williams Sirls' newest literary offering THE SINNERS' GARDEN, we are reminded not only of God's love but his purpose for all of us.

The cast of characters we meet are just like us: broken, imperfect, yet capable of things that might seem impossible to some.

Take Andy for instance.
...more
Anne Marie
Oct 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I was blessed to receive an Advance Readers Copy of The Sinners' Garden by joining William Sirls Street Team while back when he had posted openings on his facebook page.

BRAVO! BRAVO! BRAVO! Mr. Sirls, you did it again! This book deserves more than 5 stars!!!

In this book we met Andy (a teenager who hates his mom), Judi (Andy's mom), Rip (Judi's brother) and Heather (long time friend of Judi and Rip). Andy doesn't understand why things has happened to him and why he has a scar on his face and he
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Jessica
Oct 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc, owned
I recieved an advanced copy of this book for review purposes and I recieved no monetary compensation for this review.

Have you ever read a book so fast because you wanted to find out what happens in the end that you know you are missing a lot of details of the book? I felt like that when reading The Sinners' Garden . This book is so action packed that I could not put it down. The great plot was not the only amazing part of this book though; the lessons that I learned about God while reading
...more
Kate Joyce
Nov 15, 2013 rated it really liked it
My friend Linda could not have given me this book at a more perfect time. I was home from work for 5 days after having my final cataract surgery. Once again William Sirls has delivered a book that is wrapped in the Word and put it in today's culture, proving that what was Truth when Jesus walked this planet is still Truth today. I finished The Sinner Garden in 3 days! I read half of it in one sitting. I could relate to the characters especially Rip. I too have found the everlasting grace that He ...more
Becky
Sep 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. It was very detailed and emotional. Although I love Christian fiction, this book was outside of the usual book I read because the ending wasn't 100% happy, and there was no romance. This book was about healing from past family issues.

Andy, the teenage boy, hears from God through an iPod. Yes, God can speak to us through a variety of ways, and this was a new one for me. His speaking to Andy though nature was less of a stretch for me. I appreciate how each of the
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Gil
Apr 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was a great read. On the supernatural side but as they said, if miracles can happen 2000 years ago, why is it so hard to believe today?
I liked the pace of the book and (view spoiler)There was also an element of mystery as to who was the Summer Santa and (view spoiler) I
...more
Pat
Oct 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great Christian fiction. Loved it!

In the small Lake Erie township of Benning, someone is at work cultivating a supernatural garden...

Andy Kemp's young life has been as ravaged as his scarred face. Disfigured by an abusive father, the teenager hides behind his books and an impenetrable wall of cynicism and anger.

As Andy's mother struggles to reconnect with him, his Uncle Rip returns transformed from a stint in prison and wants to be a mentor to the reclusive boy, doing everything he can to help
...more
Joan
Oct 29, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A Christian novel about a family of mother, her son, her brother, and their best friend all of whom have lost their faith and experience guilt , sorrow, and anger. When Uncle Rip returns from finding his faith again in prison, his witness and story and supernatural events begin to change them. Serious but uplifting.
Shirley Klooster
Many Biblical life principles lived out in the lives of these people who have suffered circumstances and consequences of their life lived.
Quote from main character, Rip: ".... all lies have to change or die, because they are constantly haunted by the truth. And as much as we sometimes want to convince ourselves that we can...we can't change the truth. Only accept it."
Janice Workman
Jan 25, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this book to be readable, engrossing, understandable. It represents God in such a loving, positive light. I also appreciated that life's realities were shown: sometimes things are different than what we expect, what we want may not be what God has planned, love and kindness matter.
Ben Harris
Dec 09, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good read. Thoughtful tale of forgiveness and hope. Suspenseful parts at the beginning and toward the end.
Gayle
Feb 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book once I got into it, but I almost didn't read it because of all the bad language. A book is way more enjoyable when it is clean!
David Pyle
Jul 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent storytelling, although it is very clearly evangelical in its message. I loved the twist at the end and encourage anyone who likes Christian fiction to give it a read.
Abigail Ford
Sep 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorite-books
SUCH an incredible book. It may have just changed my life. Absolutely amazing. A must-read for sure!!!
Roberta Monroe Clark
So good!
Tai
Jan 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I can usual catch the plot twist in books. Not this one! Threw me for an entire loop. Pleasantly surprised. Really enjoyed the ending as well.
Jennifer M
Jan 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a great little story. I need an ipod from heaven in my pocket sometimes for some words of encouragement. It's a must read.
J. Else
Jan 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
This story centers on a few main themes, one of which is forgiveness. Giving forgiveness to yourself and to others and then contrasting it to the ultimate forgiveness given through Jesus. There were some good Biblical illusions which provided character growth. I think the best reference was the one about Cain and Abel. That was a shocker for me when it was finally figured out! I can’t say I was overly surprised at who Cain was, but the reference used was brilliant and well revealed. I also liked ...more
Wanda
Feb 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book opened up a lot of emotions for me. An entire one fourth of the book I had tissues in hand. It had amazing characters-- Judi Kemp who suffered domestic abuse for years, Heather Gerisch who was a police with the Benning Police Department and was haunted by her father's death, Judi's son Andy whose face was scarred at the age of three and carried hatred and unbelief like a cloak, Pastor Welsh whose spiritual wisdom was an integral part in all of their lives and Gerald "Rip" Ripley, and ...more
Linda
Nov 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
What do a scarred teenager, his victimized mother, a born-again ex-con drug dealer, and a deputy who hasn’t gotten over the death of her father have in common? God’s undeniable Presence in the form of a miraculous flower garden appearing overnight on the grounds of a long-deserted ghost of a steel mill on the banks of the Detroit River. Author William Sirls brings these people together in his second book, “The Sinners’ Garden.”

Teenaged son Andy and his divorced mom Judi are victims of an
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Beth
Feb 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I received this book from Litfuse Publicity for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.


Book Description:


In the small Lake Erie township of Benning, someone is at work cultivating a supernatural garden …
Andy Kemp’s young life has been as ravaged as his scarred face. Disfigured by an abusive father, the teenager hides behind his books and an impenetrable wall of cynicism and anger.
As Andy’s mother struggles to reconnect with him, his Uncle
...more
Lisa Johnson
Feb 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Title: The Sinners’ Garden
Author: William Sirls
Pages: 416
Year: 2013
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
There are some novels I walk away from totally overwhelmed by the message contained in the pages and not sure how in the world I would write the review. William Sirls’ other novel, The Reason, was read and thoroughly enjoyed by a friend of mine. I was hoping that the newest novel from the author would be as captivating as the first one was for my friend. Well, let me tell you this is a novel that will
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Amanda Stephan
Dec 30, 2013 rated it really liked it
First, let me begin by saying Mr. Sirls is a good, solid writer. You can't help but care for his characters and wish the best for a couple of them and want to smack some sense into them a few times. In his biography, he is very clear that he comes from a less than pristine background and it shows in his storyline, plot, and development. Using a Robin Hood type of hero, the reader is forced to wonder several things. Is it right for the Summer Santa to break into peoples' homes to leave them much ...more
Jeanie
May 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Sinner’s Garden by William Sirls is every bit as intense his first book, The Reason, if not more so! I found it to be a novel that was nearly impossible to put down, captivated from the beginning.
Sometimes when the Lord wants our attention, He uses His people to deliver His message. It may be a pastor’s sermon or the gentle mentoring of a layperson. But – a teen who doesn’t believe in God, who is compelled to speaks the words he hears through his iPod? A man in black who breaks into homes
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Jalynn Patterson
Feb 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
About the Book:
In a small town where hope and tragedy intermingle, things—and people—are not always what they seem.
Andy Kemp has suffered most of his life from both physical and emotional scars, and he believes that the scars on his face are proof that God doesn’t love him. Andy has grown into a withdrawn teenager, keeping to himself, until his uncle, ex-con Gerald Ripley, shows up and wants to be a mentor to Andy. Rip has turned his life around and wants to do everything he can to help mend
...more
Victor Gentile
Feb 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
William Sirls in his new book, “The Sinner’s Garden” published by Thomas Nelson takes us into the life of Andy Kemp.

From the back cover: In the small Lake Erie township of Benning, someone is at work cultivating a supernatural garden …

Andy Kemp’s young life has been as ravaged as his scarred face. Disfigured by an abusive father, the teenager hides behind his books and an impenetrable wall of cynicism and anger.

As Andy’s mother struggles to reconnect with him, his Uncle Rip returns transformed
...more
Rick
Feb 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
As a blogger/reviewer/reader/bookguy, I tend to read a lot of books. I tend to read a lot of books that I consider to be suspense or intrigue or thriller novels. Sometimes, though, a book comes along that attracts me for different reasons, reasons that I can’t really put into words. This book, “The Sinners’ Garden”, is definitely one of those books.

What do a teenager, his mother an ex-con and a cop all have in common? Sounds like the beginning to a very bad joke doesn’t it? In this case, these 4
...more
Sharee
Apr 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Sinner’s Garden is the second William Sirls’ books that I’ve read and it did not fail to deliver in any way. His writing style is so refreshing, honest and incredibly creative in the story telling process. I thoroughly enjoyed The Sinner’s Garden and could not put it down.

In a world where really ugly things happen to innocents, it is sometimes hard to understand how God would allow such things to those He professes to love. Yet it is through such tragedies and heart breaks that God does some
...more
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Over the course of his life, William Sirls has experienced both great highs and tremendous lows--some born of chance, some born of choice. Once a senior vice president at a major investment firm, he was incarcerated in 2007 for wire fraud and money laundering, where he learned a great deal more than he ever bargained for. Life lessons involving faith, grace, patience, and forgiveness are evident ...more