A Step of Faith (Walk Series #4)

A Step of Faith (Walk Series #4)

by Richard Paul Evans
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Overview

A Step of Faith (Walk Series #4) by Richard Paul Evans

Following the New York Times bestseller The Road to Grace, Richard Paul Evans’s hero Alan Christoffersen faces a life-changing crisis on his journey to grace.

After the death of his beloved wife, after the loss of his advertising business to his once-trusted partner, after bankruptcy forced him from his home, Alan Christoffersen is a broken man. Leaving everything he knows, he sets out on an extraordinary cross-country journey; with only the pack on his back, he is walking from Seattle to Key West—the end of the map.

Along the way, Alan begins to heal, meeting people who teach him lessons about love, sacrifice, and forgiveness. But in St. Louis, Alan faces another life-changing crisis, and now the journey is in jeopardy.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781451628340
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication date: 05/07/2013
Series: Walk Series , #4
Sold by: SIMON & SCHUSTER
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 46,493
File size: 6 MB

About the Author

Richard Paul Evans is the #1 bestselling author of The Christmas Box. Each of his more than thirty novels has been a New York Times bestseller. There are more than thirty million copies of his books in print worldwide, translated into more than twenty-four languages. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the American Mothers Book Award, the Romantic Times Best Women’s Novel of the Year Award, the German Audience Gold Award for Romance, two Religion Communicators Council Wilbur Awards, the Washington Times Humanitarian of the Century Award and the Volunteers of America National Empathy Award. He lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, with his wife, Keri, and their five children. You can learn more about Richard on Facebook at Facebook.com/RPEFans, or visit his website, RichardPaulEvans.com.

Hometown:

Salt Lake City, Utah

Date of Birth:

October 11, 1962

Place of Birth:

Salt Lake City, Utah

Education:

B.A., University of Utah, 1984

Read an Excerpt

A Step of Faith


  • Maybe, if we just accepted our deaths, we might finally start to live.

    Alan Christoffersen’s diary

  • Reading Group Guide

    This reading group guide for A Step of Faith includes an introduction, discussion questions, and ideas for enhancing your book club. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.

    Introduction

    Alan Christofferson is a broken man. Following the sudden death of his wife and the betrayal of his former business partner, the once-successful advertising executive leaves everything behind to embark upon an incredible cross-country journey—on foot. Carrying only his backpack, Alan is determined to walk every step from Seattle to Key West. A Step of Faith is the fourth book in Evans’s bestselling series and picks up directly after the shocking events of The Road to Grace. As he walks, Alan meets a number of people whose own stories help him come to terms with his grief and anger. But a life-changing event threatens to bring an end to his journey, and Alan must decide what is truly most important to him.

    Topics & Questions for Discussion

    1. Alan writes in his diary, “Maybe, if we just accepted our deaths, we might finally start to live.” How is this sentiment echoed throughout the novel? Consider some of the people Alan meets, like Dustin, who is preparing for doomsday, and Paige, who works in hospice care. How are various characters living their lives based on their acceptance or nonacceptance of death?

    2. Of his mother’s death when he was eight Alan says, “Some might say that she jinxed herself, but I don’t think so. My mother wasn’t a pessimist. I think she knew.” He later reflects on a conversation he had with McKale and her request to Alan to remarry should anything happen to her. Do you think McKale may also have somehow sensed that she was going to die? Have you experienced people in your life having similar premonitions?

    3. When Falene shares the news about Kyle, Alan realizes that he is actually sorry to hear it. Falene says she believes he deserved his fate. How is Alan able to feel compassion for Kyle? Do you think he is right to feel this way? Or do you agree with Falene?

    4. Why is Alan blind to Falene’s feelings for him until he reads her letter? Falene writes that “the depth of love is revealed in its departure.” What does she mean by this? Do you think Alan’s feelings about Falene would have changed without her letter and move to New York? What else influenced his feelings toward her during his journey?

    5. Before Alan’s surgery, Nicole and Alan’s father are very nervous. “The truth was, I was the least worried of all of us,” Alan says. Why is Alan able to remain so calm? Do you think he just has a feeling that he will be fine, or that he has become more at peace with the idea of his own death?

    6. Why is Alan’s father so against Alan returning to his walk? Given what you learn by the end of the novel, do you think his father’s reasons were more complicated than you previously believed? How has their relationship changed over the course of the series?

    7. When Alan spends the night at Pastor Tim’s church, they discuss the existence of miracles. “We live in an age of unbelief, but I promise you, miracles still abound,” Pastor Tim says. Later that night Alan reflects on their conversation and determines that he “had prayed as sincerely as a man could for McKale’s life to be spared,” to no avail. Do you think his view of miracles might have changed by the end of the novel? If so, what would have caused this shift?

    8. What was the significance of the scene in which Alan helps the paramedics attend to the woman who says she is having a heart attack? How might this event have affected Alan?

    9. In Missouri, Alan, a longtime ad man, makes note of the many whimsical restaurant names and slogans he sees. How else does Alan display and use his “adman” background during his journey? How else does his career experience influence the way he looks at the world?

    10. When Alan first encounters “Master El,” the two have a conversation about how people interpret the Bible. Before you learned more about El and his group, did you agree with anything he was saying? Did any part of what he said to Alan during dinner ring true or seem plausible? Or was he completely wrong?

    11. Why did Alan choose to accompany El to his compound despite his suspicions about him? Did this seem in character for Alan? El tells Alan that those “most susceptible to mind control are precisely those who don’t believe they are susceptible.” Why might El think this? What did you think about this section of the novel?

    12. Do you think that if Alan’s feelings for Falene hadn’t developed that he may have chosen to be with Nicole despite his conflicted feelings about her? Given his revelation about wanting to share his life with someone, do you think he would choose to settle down with someone he wasn’t fully in love with rather than spend his life alone?

    13. Near the end of the novel Alan begins to believe that “perhaps these detours are my journey. No matter how much I, or the rest of humanity, wishes otherwise, life is not lived in smooth, downhill expressways, but in the obscure, perilous trails and back roads of life where we stumble and feel our way through the fog of the unknown.” Discuss this passage. How does this theme resonate throughout the novel, and, if you’ve read them, the other books in the series? Can you think of a time in your life when you had a similar realization?

    14. Have you been to any of the towns or sites that Alan visits throughout the novel? What did Alan’s general impression of the southern United States seem to be? Did his journey make you interested in exploring any new places for yourself?

    15. If you had to use only three words to describe this book, which words would you choose?

    Enhance Your Book Club

    1. While Alan isn’t a huge fan of Elvis’s music, he thoroughly enjoys his visit to Graceland. If you’re more partial to Elvis than Alan is, create a playlist of his music for your next book club. If you’ve been to Graceland, bring in your photos and souvenirs to share with the group. Or have an Elvis-themed dinner; there are a number of cookbooks containing recipes of his favorite dishes available from amazon.com and other bookstores.

    2. Following in Alan’s footsteps, plan a rambling walk with your book club (pick a day with a sunny forecast). Perhaps there are some landmarks in your town you’d like to get a closer look at. Or find an out-of-the-way grassy spot that’s perfect for a picnic.

    3. Share with the group a memory of a trip that you took—no matter how far away or nearby—that changed your life in some way. Were you sightseeing when a revelation hit you like a ton of bricks? Did you sample your favorite cuisine for the first time? Did you meet someone who shared valuable knowledge with you? Was it simply the most fun you’ve ever had?

    Customer Reviews

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    A Step of Faith (Walk Series #4) 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 61 reviews.
    CluckLE More than 1 year ago
    I am always ready for another book in this series. I love his writing. I can't put it down. Don't make us wait too long. Loved them all every step of the journey
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Wonderful story I have read all of them n every time Is so hard to put down the book I'll keep reading until He gets to key west......
    Zazzy1 More than 1 year ago
    Richard Paul Evans has tugged at the heart again with “A Step of Faith”, the latest installment of his amazing “The Walk” series.    This time we find Alan Christoffersen in the midst of another personal crisis that threatens his journey across the country to Key West.   Alan is joined by those he needs most but circumstances and emotions get in the way and he eventually returns alone to continue his Walk. Alan heads from St. Louis through the deep South tasting the culture and amazing food along the way. He meets some very interesting people including an encounter with a “religion” he never expected.    All of them have Alan pondering what he really needs and wants most.  When Alan comes to the realization about what to do, he hits another speed bump in his path. Like many of Richard Paul Evans fans I could not wait for this book to come out.   I read it quickly and could not put it down.  Mr. Evans is an incredible storyteller and this book is the best one of this series yet!    Now begins the agonizing wait for the final part of this incredible adventure due out next year.  “The Walk” series puts readers through an emotional wringer and we are better for the ride. It started out with “The Walk” and now after many “Miles to Go” down “The Road to Grace” take “A Step of Faith” and join the journey.   Life’s road will never look the same. 
    Nancie-rose More than 1 year ago
    Awesome books. I couldn't put my Nook down. wonderful and inspiring. God bless Richard. ~Nancy Dittert, Iowa
    Shirley77 More than 1 year ago
    What a wonderful series! Con't wait till number 5 comes out in May!
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Having waited in anticipation for this sequel, I was disappointed. It felt like Mr. Evans was tired of the journey and just wanted it over. The first half of the journey took three books whereas the second half (with the exception of Florida) was rushed into one). After I finished, I found myself thinking, "Is that all there is?"
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Richard Paul Evans never fails to grab you and tell a story worth reading---this part of the walk is a great sequel to the walk series. I have loved them all.
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Read all four in the Walk Series...very heartwarming, funny and you will shed a tear. In this series you can see how adversity can become an adventure with new friendships formed and renewal in your faith and trust in your fellowman. Can hardly wait for the next edition coming out in May 2014.
    ReadingIsExciting More than 1 year ago
    I love all of Richard Paul Evans books and especially this Walk series, which does make you think of what is really important in your life.
    lucynomore More than 1 year ago
    I have read each of the Walk Series books as they came out. I am curious how this trip is going to end since A Step of Faith had a surprise ending!
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Great story but I agree with some of the others who said it appeared rushed. It did. Mr. Evans went into great detail with the other books about his journey, the towns, his adventures or misadventures. This one was lacking any depth and it felt as though he was just trying to quickly meet deadlines. Still loved this story I just hope Book 5, if its the last, reads like the first 3.
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Another good one!! This one is just as good as the first. I have to admit though that I can't wait to see how it is going to end. I hope to see something about all the women he has met along the way. I would almost like to see his dad end up with one of them..lol
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    As Alan hits yet another speed bump, he overcomes and begins his Walk where he left off before the speed bump. He meets interesting people along the way including a cult. He learns a lot of history of this country along the way. The Swamp is scary for him but then as he walks through the swamp discovers maybe the people are scarier than the things in the swamp. as he ends this part of the journey, it has been a year anniversary, he realizes he is healing. I was so sad when the book ended and I read the next book will not be available until next May...It has been a great read and I am looking forward to his journey through Florida
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    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Having Had the exact kind of brain tumor, I was glued to this book and the walk during this stage. The whole series is superb!
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Don't expect me to talk to you for the next 20 YEARS!!!
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Sorreh.... I have another cat that is coming to the clan. Try her?)) Cries and runs away, saying"I'm sorry! I'm sorry!"
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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    Taffie10 More than 1 year ago
    A MUST read series! I couldn't put it down!! What's in store for Alan next? 
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    I was hooked on this series from the start. This book took me no where. I am a huge fan if this author so i will look past this 1 disapointment. Please don't drop the ball on the ending.