I first became interested in the story of Ian and Larissa Murphy when I saw them in a promotional video for John Piper’s book This Momentary Marriage. Their story of faith and commitment, shown in only a few minutes, was powerful. Now that they’ve put together a book describing the story of their relationship, I’m completely amazed.
When it comes to reading, romance books, relationship books, and marriage books are not high on my list, probably much to the chagrin of my wife. At first glance, Eight Twenty Eight looks like it could be one of those books, but it’s not. It’s a story, a true story, told in Larissa’s voice about how she and Ian met, dated, and eventually married. The unique part of their story is the fact that Ian was involved in a car accident resulting in a traumatic brain injury and serious physical impairments, all before they got married.
This is a story about love. Not the love you see in a sappy rom-com or chick-flick your wife convinces you to watch with her on a Friday night, but the kind of love that “endures all things” as Paul says in 1 Corinthians 13. It’s about how Ian and Larissa’s commitment to each other, grounded in their relationship with God, overcame a car crash, a brain injury, physical impairments, and the expectations of some that Larissa and Ian should each “move on with their lives” apart from each other. If The Notebook was a compelling story as fiction, Eight Twenty Eight is even more compelling as truth. I highly recommend it, and I will be suggesting it to family and friends because the book is just that good. This was clearly one of the best books I’ll enjoy this year, likely even longer than that.
I received a copy of this book from christianaudio for the purpose of review.