Francine Rivers: Let’s Chat! The Last Sin Eater

Welcome, everyone!

Francine Rivers ranks near the top of most lovers of Christian fiction’s favorite authors lists. For many, her most memorable books are Redeeming Love or the Mark of the Lion series. I admit those novels vie for top billing on my list too. But The Last Sin Eater surpasses even those masterful works.

The Last Sin Eater

rom the author’s website: Set in Appalachia in the 1850s, The Last Sin Eater is the story of a community committed to its myth of a human “sin eater,” who absolves the dead of their sins, and the ten-year-old child who shows them the Truth.

All that matters for young Cadi Forbes is finding the one man who can set her free from the sin that plagues her, the sin that has stolen her mother’s love from her and made her wish she could flee life and its terrible injustice. But Cadi doesn’t know that the “sin eater” is seeking as well.

Before their journeys are over, Cadi and the sin eater must face themselves, each other, and the One who will demand everything from them in exchange for the answers they seek. A captivating tale of suffering, seeking, and redemption.

Why I Choose Sin Eater

The Last Sin Eater ranks at the top of my favorite Francine Rivers works for several reasons. Here are five of them:

The Title

First, the title. When I heard the term “sin eater”, I was hooked. What in the world is a sin eater?

The Setting

in the 1850s. While the rest of the world was experiencing “enlightenment” in science, philosophy, and a host of other arenas, the souls living apart in backwoods Appalachia were holding onto a flawed view of sin that affected every area of their lives. Secluded, they needed enlightenment they had never imagined.

The First Line

The last time I saw the sin eater was the night Granny Forbes was taken to her grave. The questions those eighteen words engendered drew me into the story, siren-like. And I’ve not strayed far.

The Theme

Suffering. Seeking. And Redemption. All three hover around a central theme of sin, its consequences, and its solution. When separated from a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, human beings revert to humanism. Surely human frailty–sin–is to be dealt with by human beings. Isn’t it?

And mustn’t the one who remedies sin’s plaguing effect be kept apart from others so as not to “reinfect” them? (Leviticus 16:10 – But the goat chosen by lot as the scapegoat shall be presented alive before the Lord to be used for making atonement by sending it into the wilderness as a scapegoat.)

No one must open the locked door that keeps the answers safe, certainly not a child. Surely . . .

The Take Away

he effect this story had on me can’t be over emphasized. I was born in a loving, devoted Christian home. So I learned God’s solution for sin early on. But I grew to adulthood with misconceptions galore and lived in a “separate from the world” mindset that crippled my knowledge of the fullness of God’s grace.

I have known a similar internal agony to Cadi’s and the sin eater’s. And I’ve sought answers to similar questions myself. So I came away from this masterpiece with tears and gratitude and a level of peace I hadn’t yet attained.


f you’ve read The Last Sin Eater, I’d love to hear your impressions. Please share with us in Comments.

I don’t want anyone to miss out on the brilliance of this story. So join the conversation below, and you might receive The Last Sin Eater in digital format. 

P.S. Winners of the 2-week drawing: Shonda and Debbey.

~ ~ ~

Lord, thank You for showing us what sin is and giving us free will to choose–or reject–it. Thank You for providing the answer to sin. Thank You for the enlightenment that comes from Your Word. It’s a light to our paths and a lamp to our feet. Hallelujah! Please bless every word Francine Rivers writes for You.
~ For Jesus’ sake

18 thoughts on “Francine Rivers: Let’s Chat! The Last Sin Eater

  1. Alicia Haney

    The Last Sin Eater sounds very interesting , I have not read it yet either, but God willng someday I will, I myself like to read a book before they make it into a movie, because I find the books to be a lot better then the book, when I have read a book and they turn it into a movie, I am usually very disappointed when I watch the movie. This book sounds very intriguing. I am not an ebook reader either as i prefer to hold a book in my hand. God Bless you and I would Love to read this book. Thank you for sharing this.

    1. I hope you get to read it too, Alicia. Thanks for participating.

  2. Debbey Cozzone

    I have not read the book or seen the movie. Appalachia has come a long way since the 1850s as has most secluded areas. I am intrigued.

    1. This is an intriguing book, Debby! I hope you get to read it. Thanks for stopping by. Please come again.

  3. Marilyn

    I haven’t read The Last Sin Eater.

    Blessings for a joyous Easter.

    1. Hi, Marilyn. Welcome, friend. What a faithful follower you are. I hope your Easter was joyous. Maybe you’ll win The Last Sin Eater. 🙂

  4. I’ve read the book twice, and refused to give it away. I’ve also seen the movie. Love, love, love.

    1. I won’t turn my loose either, Clarice. I have it on audio and have listened to it more than once. The movie is excellent too. I’m with you on this favorite!

  5. Lelia (Lucy) Reynolds

    I’ve read the book and watched the movie. I loved the book, but I need to read it again as it has been such a long time. Thank you for sharing.

    1. The Last Sin Eater is unforgettable. Thanks for joining the conversation, Lucy.

  6. Shonda Fischer

    Ive heard of this book but have not read it. I’ve heard that it’s exceptionally good! Francine Rivers book are always so good and I have to get this book, adding to my TBR pile.

    1. It IS exceptional, Shonda. Thanks so much for joining our chat. Please come back.

  7. Faith Creech

    I have read many of Francine’s books and enjoyed them so much but have not read this one yet. It does look very good!

    1. Hi, Faith. Great to see you in our circle this week. Keep coming back!

  8. Paula Shreckhise

    I read this a few years ago. I remember it was very well done. Guess I need to read it again.

    1. Hi, Paula. Great to have you in the circle this week. Yes, this one is unforgettable.

  9. Perrianne Askew

    Inhave not read the book but I have seen the movie. The book is always better, right?

    1. Hi, Perianne. Thanks for joining in this week. Yes, I’ve seen the movie too. The last scene gives me chills just remembering it 🙂


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