Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
(Avon Inspire January 2, 2008)
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Tracey Bateman is the award-winning author of more than twenty-five books, including Defiant Heart, the First in the Westeard Hearts series.
She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and recently served on the board as President. She loves in Lebanon, Montana, with her husband and their four children.
ABOUT THE BOOK
In the second book in the Westward Hearts trilogy, will the promise of a new life out west heal the scars of Toni's past? This series tells the stories of three strong women as they struggle to survive on the rough wagon train and lose their hearts to unlikely heroes along the way.
Think "Little House on the Prairie" meets Francine River's, Redeeming Love, and you begin to get a sense of the riveting historical series that Tracey Bateman has created.
In this second installment, we follow Toni Rodden, a former prostitute who seeks to escape her past and build a new life and a new reputation, when she joined the wagon train. Despite much resentment and distrust from the other women, Toni finally earns a place on the wagon train and finds a surrogate family in Fannie Caldwell and her two siblings. For the first time in her life, Toni actually feels free.
But, while Toni once harbored dreams that her new life might include a husband and family, she soon realizes the stigma that comes with her past is difficult to overcome, and that she'll never be truly loved or seen as worthy. As the trip out west begins to teach her to survive on her own, she resolves to make her own living as a seamstress when the train reaches Oregon.
Despite Toni's conviction that no man will be able to see beyond her marred past, Sam Two-feathers, the wagon scout and acting preacher for the train, seems to know of a love that forgives sins, and which values much more than outward appearances.
Will Sam have the confidence to declare his love? Will Toni be able to trust in a God that can forgive even the darkest past?
Faith, love, and courage will be put to the test in Distant Heart.
Recommended. Tracy Bateman is one of the best Inspirational Historical Romance writers. Read, laugh, love, cry, and pass it on to your friends.
What Lies Within by Karen Ball
Multnomah Fiction, November 20, 2007
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Karen Ball, a bestselling novelist, is also the editor behind several of today's bestselling Christian novels. Her love for words was passed down through her father and grandfather - both pastors who shared God's truth through sermons and storytelling. Blending humor, poignancy, and honesty, Karen's writing style is a powerful force for revealing God's truth. She lives in Oregon with her husband, Don, and their "kids," Bodhan, a mischief-making Siberian husky, and Dakota, an Aussie-terrier mix who should have been named "Destructo."
ABOUT THE BOOK
Nothing’s going to stop Kyla…until the ground crumbles beneath her feet. Kyla Justice has arrived. Her company, Justice Construction, is one of the most critically acclaimed, commercially successful companies in the Pacific Northwest. And yet, something is missing. Not until she’s called on to build a center for inner-city kids does she realize what it is: her sense of purpose. Now nothing can stop her, not the low budget, not supply problems, not gang opposition, not her boyfriend’s suggestion that she sell her business and marry him–and most especially not that disagreeable Rafael Murphy.
Rafe Murphy understands battle. Wounded in action, this Force Recon Marine carries the scars–and the nightmares–to prove it. Though he can’t fight overseas any longer, he’s found his place as a warrior in the civilian world. So he soldiers on, trusting that one of these days, God will reveal to him why Rafe survived the ambush in Iraq. That day has arrived.
Kyla and Rafe both discover that determination alone won’t carry them through danger and challenges. When gang violence threatens their very foundations, there’s only one way to survive: rely on each other, be real–and surrender to God. In other words, risk everything…
RECOMMENDED! ANOTHER GREAT READ TO SHARE WITH FRIENDS!
Bluegrass Peril (Steeple Hill December 4, 2007)
I curled up with a cup of hot chocolate and Virginia Smith's Bluegrass Peril in front of the fireplace over Thanksgiving weekend. Now, I fully understand the meaning of a "cozy mystery." Bluegrass Peril has just enough suspense to keep the pages turning, and a sweet romance of second chances that warms the heart. This one I'm passing on to Carol, my Mom-in-law, who will LOVE IT and pass it on to her Red Hat friends. Highly recommended!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Virginia Smith left her job as a corporate director to become a full time writer and speaker in the summer of 2005. Since then, she has contracted eight novels, and numerous articles and short stories. She writes contemporary, humorous novels for the Christian market, including her debut, Just As I Am (Kregel Publications, March 2006) and her new release, Murder by Mushroom (Steeple Hill, August 2007). Her short fiction has been anthologized, and her articles have been published in a variety of Christian magazines. An energetic speaker, Virginia loves to exemplify God’s truth by comparing real-life situations to well-known works of fiction, such as in her popular talk, “Biblical Truths in Star Trek.”
ABOUT THE BOOK:
WHO KILLED HER BOSS?
Local police had tagged single mom Becky Dennison as their prime suspect. But she'd only been in the wrong place at the wrong time...admittedly, with her boss's lifeless body. Sure it looked bad, but Becky had no motive for killing...even if she had opportunity. When the director of the retirement farm for thoroughbred champions is murdered, Becky Dennison teams up with the handsome manager of a neighboring horse farm, Scott Lewis, to find her boss's killer. Soon the amateur detectives are hot on the trail of the murderer...even as their feelings for each other deepen. The amateur sleuths uncover a trail of clues that lead them into the intricate society of Kentucky's elite thoroughbred breeding industry. They soon find themselves surrounded by the mint julep set - jealous southern belles and intensely competitive horse breeders - in a high-stakes game of danger, money, and that famous southern pride.And for Becky and Scott, this race on the Kentucky tracks has the greatest stakes of all: life or death!
Romantic Times awarded Bluegrass Peril * * * * FOUR STARS! * * * *
A Shadow of Treason, Chronicles of The Spanish Civil
War - Book Two by Tricia Goyer
Tricia's research of the period, colors her characters and makes the story come to life.
About the book:
Sophie discovers that nothing is as she first imagined. When Walt, the reporter who helped her over the border, shows up again after Guernica is bombed, Sophie is given an impossible mission. She must leave behind the man she's fallen in love with and return to the person who betrayed her.
Another layer of the war in Spain is revealed as Sophie is drawn into the international espionage schemes that could turn the tide of the war and help protect the soldiers from the International Brigade ... but can she find a way to get the information she's discovered to Walt before it's too late?
No one told the rescuers not to talk, yet instinctively they
sifted through the bits of brick and shards of glass as quietly as
possible, alert for the slightest sound of human life beneath the
rubble of the tailor shop.
Deion Clay paused for a minute and wiped his brow with a
soot-blackened handkerchief. He refused to look at the other
buildings surrounding him, reduced to heaps. The sight caused a
deep ache in his gut. All he knew was underneath this pile a few
families had taken refuge in the basement.
Deion had been walking through the streets sometime in the
night, offering help to the injured, when he heard the cries for
help. And although they had fallen silent for the past few hours,
he clung to the faintest hope. It was all he had.
Though hundreds of rescuers had swarmed the area last night,
fighting the flames, most citizens from Guernica had since bundled
up every meager possession they could scrounge and headed
out of town with oxcarts carrying the children and old women.
Perhaps twenty still worked alongside Deion, their skin made even
blacker by soot than his natural color. They continued to dig, refusing
to give up hope for the missing wife, son, or brother.
Read more at Read Chapter
Tricia talks about writing
I first thought about writing in 1993. A friend from church, Cindy Martinusen told me about her aspirations to become a novelist. My first thought was . . . Real people do that?
She invited me to attend Mount Hermon Christian Writer’s Conference with her. I was
new as new can be. I was also 22-years-old and pregnant with my first child, but I learned
enough at that conference to start off on the right track. And I’ve been actively working
at my writing ever since.
I never planned on writing historical fiction. I wanted to write contemporary romances.
Then in 2000, I was with Cindy and another writer friend, Anne de Graaf in Austria.
They were researching books, and I was along for the ride. BUT I was the one who got a
novel idea, after talking to an Austrian historian. The historian’s true stories about the
liberation of Gusen and Mauthausen concentration camps sparked my novel idea. The
idea led to attending two WWII reunions and interviewing veterans. The veterans’ stories
led to more novels.
When I first started researching for my WWII novels, I knew NOTHING about World War II. I remember attending the first WWII reunion only months after I first got the idea. So, when I first met the veterans I had very dumb questions. Either that, or I just nodded my head when they rattled off their stories and took notes of words/phrases/events I needed to look up! The veterans were very kind to me. I usually have a few of them read through my complete manuscript to check all my facts and history. Many of them tell me, “It’s like being back there again.” So, actually these embarrassing moments have forced me to research in-depth, and I think that comes through in my stories.
I get many, many notes, letters, and emails with veterans. Some of them are not believers. Others are of the Jewish faith. Yet all of them love the stories. I remember one of the first emails I got from a veteran. He went on and on for pages about all the minor details I got right in the manuscript. He was full of praises. Then, near the end, he asked, “Now, can you tell me more about the faith element of your story?”
I was able to share the good news of Jesus with him. He’s since passed away, and I don’t know if my words had any impact. I hope to find out they did . . . in eternity!
That’s the cool thing about historical fiction. Veterans and their families read the stories
because it’s about THEM or their family members. People who would never step into a
church or listen to Christian radio read these books which point to hope in Christ.
I have a WWII website at www.triciagoyer.com/ww2stories that I update regularly, and more stories will be posted in the coming weeks. Researching for these novels has provided me with SO MANY amazing stories--far more than I could fit into the pages of the novel. This is simply my way of honoring the wonderful men who served our country.
A Shadow of Treason is Book Two. Book Three is A Whisper of Freedom. It will be out February 2008. The characters that we love are all still in the midst of danger at the end of Book Two. Book Three continues their stories as we follow their journeys in -- and (for a few) out -- of Spain. It's an exciting conclusion to the series!
Tricia Goyer has written seven novels for Moody Publishing:
From Dust and Ashes (2003)
Night Song (2004)
Dawn of a Thousand Nights (2005);
Arms of Deliverance (2006)
A Valley of Betrayal (2007)
A Shadow of Treason (Fall 2007)
A Whisper of Freedom (February 2008)
Night Song was awarded American Christian Fiction Writer's 2005 Book of the Year for Best Long Historical. Dawn of a Thousand Nights won the same award in 2006.
Also, coming out in the next year are: My Life, Unscripted (Thomas Nelson, 2007), Generation NeXt Marriage (Multnomah, Spring 2008), and 3:16-the teen version of the a book by Max Lucado (Thomas Nelson, Spring 2008).
Tricia and her husband John live with their three children in Kalispell, Montana. Tricia's grandmother also lives with them, and Tricia volunteers mentoring teen moms and leading children's church. Although Tricia doesn't live on a farm, she can hit one with a rock by standing on her back porch and giving it a good throw.