If I Could: A Son's Plea
By T.K. Ware
This is a rather unique story. I’m not sure if I should call it a Christian story or just a solid story about life choices and regrets.
I think we all experience a brief period of rebellion in our young age, that concept is somewhat explored in this beautifully crafted short story by author TK Ware. If I Could: A Son’s Plea follows teenager David through a struggling period in his life making decisions that ultimately changes his life forever.
I must say, the opening of the story is the best part. We’re in the hospital with David seeing his crying family and his sobbing grandmother. We’re in his head, hearing his crude thoughts about them, calling his brother a Bible Thumper, complaining about how he had to go to church. But then we see a softer side of this bitter young man, the regret, the remorse, the statement of “If I could go back…”
That’s where things take a very serious and a very emotional turn.
David gets mixed up with the wrong crowd—every parent’s nightmare whether you’re Christian or not. This new friend David makes gets him to agree to rob a store. At first he rejects the offer but he eventually caves in to peer pressure and agrees to do it. So there’s a bit of flashback and memory replay in there but it works well and flows smoothly with the rest of the story.
The structure of this story is great. I thought everything worked really well, the flow, the characterization, and especially the climax of the story. For a story so short it sure had a great impact on me. I can honestly say I really enjoyed it without a doubt, not because I’m a Christian but because this is a great story from an obviously talented author.
I really liked the old fashioned feel of the book, we get that good old discipline from David’s grandparents as they lay down the rules about what goes on under their roof—if only parents still stood their ground like that today… It’s their insistence that David goes to church that really gives readers a closer look at why he doesn’t just have problems with religion but with authority in general but as the story progresses we see that hard brick wall put up in David’s heart slowly begin to chip away. I can’t say whether its because of his kind brother, his loving grandparents, or his enthusiastic pastor but there is a shift in his character that is believable and well-paced.
I thought the ending of the story was sad but it worked well with everything that’d happened. I think it was kind of an open ending and I could definitely see room for a part two..? Maybe. I’d call this the next crowd pleaser for fans of the famed Chicken Soup for the Soul books. I enjoyed this very much and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a family friendly read with great emotion and developed characters.