Book Review: Angel in Aisle 3 by Kevin West

In the tradition of An Invisible Thread and Same Kind of Different as Me, Angel in Aisle 3 is the heartwarming true story of an unlikely friendship that began with a chance meeting in a grocery store between a bank executive bound for prison and an elderly stranger.

When Kevin West resigned from his job as vice president of a bank in 1998 after making fraudulent loans, he spent the time before his trial managing a family-owned, small grocery store in Ironton, Ohio. Dealing with serious marriage problems and with a prison sentence almost certainly in his future, Kevin was overcome with remorse and without a scrap of hope. It was at his lowest moment that Kevin called out to a power beyond himself for help, and God answered his prayer in the form of an elderly vagrant in a soiled shirt and tattered pants named Don.

When Don saw Kevin’s open Bible on the counter next to the register, the untidy, long-haired indigent took the opportunity to share Bible wisdom and life-giving truths that changed Kevin’s life. Finding a sense of peace in their conversation, Kevin offered Don a few basic groceries and an invitation to continue their conversation the next day. What began as a chance meeting between two individuals whose lives seemed headed for certain ruin, turns into an unlikely bond of friendship that saved them both.
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It was this friendship that helped Kevin thrive in prison, restore his failed marriage, and gave Don a chance at a new life that went beyond anyone’s imagination. Moving and awe-inspiring, this story of a pure friendship sheds light on the redemption and hope that can grow out of relationships based in faith.

This is one of those stories of faith and wisdom coming from unexpected places, or more specifically in the book, from an unexpected person.  Kevin, the author of the book, tells us of his true story of meeting what he thought was a homeless man in his grocery store that he started running when he lost his job in the corporate world after making some shady decisions to pad his own pockets.  Kevin considers himself a Christian man, but after meeting, his new friend Don, he discovers that he has so much to learn.  It is interesting how both characters, Kevin and Don are changed after their meeting.  I find this a very inspiring story that teaches us that even though we make mistakes and must suffer the natural consequences, God can still use those mistakes to make us a better person.   The book is not only a lesson on faith, but loving, forgiving and not judging others as well.  I recommend this book to those who enjoy reading the inspiring stories of  others, especially when those stories help us to make changes in our own lives.  It took a lot of courage for Kevin to share his story.  He spent time in prison for his bad financial judgments, but he also learned that judging others by our first impression is not the smartest thing to do either.  The book was a quick read for me as it has a nice flow of writing and I do think you will enjoy the book as much as I did if you choose to read it.  The book is being released tomorrow by Howard Books, so don’t miss your chance to get your hands on a copy.

I was provided a complimentary copy of this book for review by Howard Books, a division of Simon and Schuster, Inc.  I was not obligated to provide a positive review.  The opinions in this review are my own.

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