A Secret Star by Krystyne F. Aleksandr (Tag Publishing)
In her autobiography A Secret Star, Krystyne Francis Aleksandr—formerly known as Natalie Winters—paints a tragic picture. The honor-roll cheerleader from Amarillo relates a horror story at the hands of adults and a system that failed a little girl who came under the care of foster parents Faye and Jack.
Many community leaders believed the pair qualified for sainthood for fostering Natalie, as well as a series of medically fragile children. On the surface, the girl’s life seemed perfect. She was pretty, vivacious and intelligent.
Behind closed doors, she was beaten, denied food, locked in dark closets, abused in unspeakable ways and used to help care for sick little ones. The one time she reported the family, retaliation resulted.
Eventually, several friends and a kind officer believed Natalie. She learned the truth as she searched for relatives using her mother’s obituary. After her mother’s death and under threats, her father sold the preschooler to Faye for $200.
All along, her mother’s family tried to connect with her.Her cousin even cheered on the same squad, but Faye kept them away, saying Natalie wanted nothing to do with them, while repeatedly telling Natalie they didn’t want her. Finally, as a high school senior, she plotted a dangerous escape.
After reaching legal age, Natalie changed her name to Krystyne (follower of Christ) Francis (freedom) Aleksandr (denoting a warrior or soldier fighting for the rights and safety of others). A Secret Star makes for difficult reading. However, Krystyne serves as an inspiration and challenge to every Christian. Her story deserves to be heard for herself and others.
Kathy Hillman, first vice president
Baptist General Convention of Texas
The Jesus Answer Book by John MacArthur (Thomas Nelson Publishers)
This unique book describes in detail the life of Jesus Christ from birth to ascension.
The author covers the life of the Savior quite adequately in four major divisions—who he is, his works and words, his Passion and why he matters. However, the subtopics under each of these divisions comprise the real value of this 205-page book.
This treatment of Jesus offers an excellent resource for witnessing to individuals of another faith. Christianity comes to life with the reading of the answers to thought-provoking questions MacArthur provides. They obviously are the result of personal witnessing experiences.
While the book deals with great theological truths, they are presented in concise and readable language. Since these answers are clearly written, The Jesus Answer Book answers many key questions and will aid people in making a decision to follow Jesus Christ.
The size and price of the book make it accessible to those seriously seeking answers to the truth about Jesus Christ.
Ed Spann, retired dean
College of Fine Arts
Dallas Baptist University