Wings of Glass
Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (2013)
Reviewed by Tracey Rock for Reader Views (12/13)
Gina Holmes’ novel “Wings of Glass” starts off as a romance. No one had ever spoken to Penny Carson the way Trent had. Trent Taylor was a farm hand that had only been working for Penny’s father for a few weeks, but she was instantly drawn to him. Within a week of meeting him, Penny’s dreams had come true and the two of them eloped.
What started out as a fairy tale soon ended and over the next ten years, Penny’s life was full of despair and hopelessness. Beneath Trent’s drinking, smoking and womanizing came nothing but harsh, cruel, berating words and endless physical assaults. Penny’s only thoughts now are to having a baby that she believes will give her that unconditional love she desperately craves. As fate would have it, Trent is in an accident at work that leaves him temporarily blind and unable to work. He is now dependent on Penny, who after all these years of hoping, finds out she is now pregnant. With no money coming in and barely anything to eat, Penny decides to go to the local food bank for help. While there, she is offered a job from Callie Mae, a woman from one of the local churches.
Against Trent’s wishes, Penny accepts the job and begins cleaning houses in town alongside a woman named Fatimah, who recently found out she too is pregnant. Callie Mae, Fatimah and Penny strike up a friendship and the three of them begin to grow close. As time goes by, Fatimah and Callie Mae notice that as Trent’s sight returns to normal, there is an increase in the number of bruises they see on Penny. Wanting to help Penny and her unborn child, they decide to stage an intervention to try to convince her to leave Trent. Their plan backfires and now, feeling ashamed and betrayed by her friends, Penny decides to stop working altogether. Trent is delighted by Penny’s decision. Now with his regained sight and Penny no longer working, he is more than comfortable in going back to his previous habits of drinking, smoking, and inviting friends over, including women. One particular woman that Penny noticed that seemed to come around most often was Norma. She noticed Norma was even at the hospital after Trent’s accident. Although she was suspicious of the two of them, it wasn’t until she overheard Trent and Norma arguing outside of their house one day that she finally decides to confront him about her. Only, Trent was in no mood to discuss his relationship with Norma and he hits her. The force of his blow was so hard that it knocked her out. When she comes to, its 3:00 in the morning and Trent is gone. When he finally does come home, he still refuses to talk about Norma or about where he had gone. It wasn’t until the following day, upon hearing that Norma had been murdered, that Trent tries to explain himself to Penny. Trent’s explanation also comes with an expectation that Penny will corroborate his story.
With only a few weeks before she is to give birth, Penny must decide how much faith she has in their marriage. Could her husband be a murderer? Will she stand by him no matter what happens, or listen to her friends and finally leave? She must protect her baby, but her husband is supposed to be her partner for life. How can she give up on him? Love must endure, right?“Wings of Glass” by Gina Holmes is written in the form of a letter or a diary from a mom to her son about the events of her life starting from the time she met her son’s father/her husband. I found the story to be very heartfelt and moving. I was able to easily and quickly read through the book as it is fast paced and not one that you can easily put down. I appreciated how the author allows the reader to walk right alongside Penny, the main character, and understand her thoughts as she remained loyal to her husband even though he abused her. Interlaced with Penny’s story is a message of faith, hope, friendships and finding yourself.