2014 Debut Christian Fiction, Part 3

2014 Debut Christian Fiction

Four more diverse debuts!

To Die OnceTO DIE ONCE
(Child of Grace #1)
by Miranda A. Uyeh

Two men, one woman, a rosebush!

Jennifer, a woman unexpectedly trapped in a path of love and passion against everything she believes. Rodrigo, a man set to get what he wants at the cost of what matters most. Stefano, a man with a past, a story to tell and passion to offer. Chidi, a friend in need, a friend indeed. Or not?

From a culture where good girls follow the norm and live as they’ve been told, Jennifer is no different from any other girl until by happenstance, she meets and falls in love with Rodrigo, a man who’s handsome, rich and foreign. Different. She has no idea who he is or what he does, and is swept into a world of romance and passion. It is not long before she discovers a shocking truth that shakes both her world and his. Then he is gone.

Stefano shows up at a time when Jennifer has made up her mind about the rules of life. He thinks she’s beautiful and is in love with her. In a bid to convince her to give him a chance in her life, old memories once buried are brought to life. And the events that follow don’t leave anyone unaffected by the truth of the past that was left unsettled.

Meanwhile, Jennifer with her friend Chidi, find themselves on a self-discovery journey that has one of them raising questions. Some just have to ask …

Where is God in all this?

Chasing the LionCHASING THE LION
by Nancy Kimball

From the blood-soaked sand of the Roman arena, a divine destiny will rise

For as long as Jonathan Tarquinius can remember, everyone has wanted something from him.

His half brother wants him dead. His master’s wife wants his innocence. The gladiator dealers want him to fight—and die—for their greed. Rome’s most famous prostitute wants his love. And the gentle slave girl who tends the wounds on his body and the hidden ones on his soul longs for him to return to his faith.

What Jonathan wants is simple. Freedom.

But God wants something from Jonathan too—something more than anyone would ever imagine. The young warrior’s journey will push him to the limits of human endurance and teach him that true freedom is found within. The greatest battle Jonathan must ever fight will not come in the arena, but deep within himself as he is forced to choose between vengeance and mercy—with the fate of an empire and the life of the woman he loves hanging in the balance.

The Resurrection of Rey PescadorTHE RESURRECTION OF REY PESCADOR
by Alfred Cedeno
Winslet Press

You are invited to a world where everyone has a mechanical heart.

That is, everyone except Rey Pescador. You want to know him. You can’t help it. And it’s not just his beating heart that lures you into his story, it¹s the depths and heights of his journey that draw you into the tales of this legendary figure. He’s incredible. He’s Rey Pescador. He’s boxed heavyweights. He’s freestyled in front of stadiums. He’s fought robots, but, for years, Rey Pescador’s greatest adventure remained a mystery.

Until now.

In this genre shattering novel, David Rosario—reluctant priest and cousin of Rey—finally confronts his absurd past. Follow his journey as he unravels the life of Rey Pescador while plunging into his own fears, dreams, and insecurities.

David’s one-sided feud with Rey humorously catapults this adventure across continents and worlds as David slowly reveals his deep love for the mysterious Rebecca in a series of tall tales and love letters that will leave you laughing, pondering the state of your own heart, and considering the profound meaning of a life well-lived.

Crooked LinesCROOKED LINES
by Holly Michael

On the shores of Lake Michigan, Rebecca Meyer seeks escape. Guilt-ridden over her little sister’s death, she sets her heart on India, a symbol of peace.

Across the ocean in South India, Sagai Raj leaves his tranquil hill station home and impoverished family to answer a higher calling. Pushing through diverse cultural and religious milieus, he labors toward his goals, while wrong turns and bad choices block Rebecca from hers.

Traveling similar paths and bridged across oceans through a priest, the two desire peace and their divine destiny. But vows and blind obedience at all costs must be weighed…and buried memories, unearthed.

Crooked Lines, a beautifully crafted debut novel, threads the lives of two determined souls from different continents and cultures. Compelling characters struggle with spirituality through despair and deceptions in search of truth.

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Tweet – #DebChristFic

Debuts Part 1 – >here<

Debuts Part 2 – >here<

Goodreads Debut CF List >here<

2014 Debut Christian Fiction, Part 2

2014 Debut Christian FictionWhen I decided to do this series just a few days ago, I imagined it might go three, maybe four posts. But I put out a call on the ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) loop, and minutes later my email box was flooded with replies from debut Christian fiction authors. As of right now, this series will run through the end of September, posting every Tuesday and Thursday (with one little break for Laura Frantz‘s next release, Love’s Fortune). I think this offers great hope for those longing to break into the publishing world. It can be done!

These posts will include books by major publishers, small publishers, indie authors, CBA and ABA publishers. The key factor is that the book falls under the Christian fiction label.

I’ve also created a 2014 Debut Christian list on Goodreads (>here<), so if you have a favorite debut, add your vote. I haven’t had time to list all the debut books on Goodreads yet, so feel free to add it.

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Miracle in a Dry SeasonMIRACLE IN A DRY SEASON
(Appalachian Blessings, #1)
by Sarah Loudin Thomas
Bethany House

In a Drought, It’s the Darkest Cloud That Brings Hope

It’s 1954 and Perla Long’s arrival in the sleepy town of Wise, West Virginia, was supposed to go unnoticed. She just wants a quiet, safe place for her and her daughter, Sadie, where the mistakes of her past can stay hidden. But then drought comes to Wise, and Perla is pulled into the turmoil of a town desperately in need of a miracle.

Casewell Phillips has resigned himself to life as a bachelor…until he meets Perla. She’s everything he’s sought in a woman, but he can’t get past the sense that she’s hiding something. As the drought worsens, Perla’s unique gift divides the town in two, bringing both gratitude and condemnation, and placing the pair in the middle of a storm of anger and forgiveness, fear and faith.

A Place in His HeartA PLACE IN HIS HEART
(The Southold Chronicles, #1)
by Rebecca DeMarino
Revell

Anglican Mary Langton longs to marry for love. Puritan Barnabas Horton still grieves the loss of his beloved wife, but he knows his two young sons need a mother. And yet these two very different people with very different expectations will take a leap of faith, wed, and then embark on a life-changing journey across the ocean to the Colonies. Along the way, each must learn to live in harmony, to wait on God, and to recognize true love where they least expect to find it.

This heartfelt tale of love and devotion is based on debut author Rebecca DeMarino’s own ancestors, who came to Long Island in the mid-1600s to establish a life–and a legacy–in the New World.

ReverieREVERIE
(Hollow Hearts #1)
by Christina Yother

Orphaned at a young age Hetty is convinced that her circumstances make her unworthy of having a family of her own. When a job opportunity as a housekeeper presents itself Hetty accepts believing that working for Isaac Wheeler and his family is a welcome, if not temporary, surrogate for her own family dreams. As she’s faced with learning to trust she discovers that wanting a family and building a family are two very different things. Will she learn to see herself as worthy of God’s gifts? Or will she return to the solitary existence that defined so much of her life?

Isaac Wheeler, successful furniture maker and dishonorable bachelor, finds Hetty’s presence in his home to be disturbing and a haunting reminder of his past sins. As he struggles with his growing and unwanted feelings, he can’t help but torment himself with mistakes from his past. Can he navigate the family tensions, infidelity, and sudden choices destined to keep them apart? Or can Isaac endure each struggle and seek forgiveness before discovering what truly makes a family?

The Butterfly and the ViolinTHE BUTTERFLY AND THE VIOLIN
(Hidden Masterpiece, #1)
by Kristy Cambron
Thomas Nelson

A Mysterious painting breathes hope and beauty into the darkest corners of Auschwitz—and the loneliest hearts of Manhattan.

Manhattan art dealer Sera James watched her world crumble at the altar two years ago, and her heart is still fragile. Her desire for distraction reignites a passion for a mysterious portrait she first saw as a young girl—a painting of a young violinist with piercing blue eyes.

In her search for the painting, Sera crosses paths with William Hanover—the grandson of a wealthy California real estate mogul—who may be the key to uncovering the hidden masterpiece. Together Sera and William slowly unravel the story behind the painting’s subject: Austrian violinist Adele Von Bron.

A darling of the Austrian aristocracy of 1942, talented violinist, and daughter to a high-ranking member of the Third Reich, Adele risks everything when she begins smuggling Jews out of Vienna. In a heartbeat, her life of prosperity and privilege dissolves into a world of starvation and barbed wire.

As Sera untangles the secrets behind the painting, she finds beauty in the most unlikely of places: the grim camps of Auschwitz and the inner recesses of her own troubled heart.

(For Part 1, Click >here<)

2014 Debut Christian Fiction, Part 1

2014 Debut Christian FictionI’ve always loved supporting debut authors. It’s not easy breaking into fiction publishing–it’s seems as if there are fewer rookie authors every year as publishers take fewer risks. And once the author does get that first book published, then they somehow have to let the world know it’s available and convince readers that they must read this book by an unknown. So, I like to do what I can to help spread the word.

This is just Part 1, so be sure to come back this Thursday (August 28) to see more debut works.

(Note: After I scheduled this post, I received multiple emails from authors who have had or will have a Christian Fiction work release in 2014, so I will be extending the debut series into next week as well, and probably beyond that!)

Shadows of the PastSHADOWS OF THE PAST (Logan Point, #1)
by Patricia Bradley
Revell

Psychology professor and criminal profiler Taylor Martin prides herself on being able to solve any crime, except the one she wants most desperately to solve–the disappearance of her father twenty years ago. When she finally has a lead on his whereabouts, Taylor returns home to Logan Point, Mississippi, to investigate. But as she works to uncover the truth, someone else will do almost anything to keep her from it.

Nick Sinclair pens mystery novels for a living, but the biggest mystery to him is how he can ever get over the death of his wife–a tragedy he believes he could have prevented. Now that his estranged brother is the only family he has left, Nick sets out to find him. But when he crosses paths with Taylor, all he seems to find is trouble.

Friend MeFRIEND ME
by John Faubion
Howard Books

Scott and Rachel’s marriage is on the brink of disaster. Scott, a businessman with a high-pressure job, just wants Rachel to understand him and accept his flaws. Rachel is a lonely housewife, desperate for attention and friendship. So she decides to create a virtual friend online, unaware that Scott is doing the exact same thing. But neither realizes that there’s a much larger problem looming. . . .

Behind both of their online creations is Melissa, a woman who is brilliant- and totally insane. Masquerading as both friend and lover, Melissa programmed a search parameter into the Virtual Friend Me software to find her perfect man, but along the way she forgot to specify his marriage status. And Scott is her ideal match. Now Melissa is determined to have it all-Scott, his family, and Rachel’s life.

Unraveled 2UNRAVELED
by Heidi McCahan
Winslet Press

Blind-sided by her questionable fiance, Lauren Carter returns to the one place she’s been avoiding, the place she used to call home. As she’s forced to look into the eyes of her past and even worse, her unraveling future she discovers that running only leaves you out of breath on a dead end street. Will she choose to unveil the secrets that haunt her? Or will she bury them once and for all and embrace a new life so different from the one she once held dear?

Blake Tully, wildly successful and breathtakingly winsome owner of a new rafting business, finds Lauren’s unexpected reappearance confusing. As he torments himself with what if’s and what should’ve been’s, he can’t mistake the feeling that crawls down his spine every time he looks at her. Although she broke his heart once, he longs to give his childhood sweetheart another chance, but can he convince her to stop running away when life gets tough? And can he forgive her when he discovers the reason she’s been hiding?

How Sweet the SoundHOW SWEET THE SOUND
by Amy K. Sorrells
David C. Cook

The Harlans appear to be a perfect Alabama family. But after a rape and two murders shake the community, three generations of the Harlans gather together. Thinking she’s seen it all, 13-year-old Anniston is struggling to deal with her loneliness and grief. Will her family’s secrets keep her heart closed to the possibility of love?

 

When Life Takes a Detour

DetourWe brought our youngest to college this past Sunday. Yes, college. Not kindergarten or middle school or even high school, but college. I have no clue how he got so old so fast!

By Saturday morning he was all packed with one important exception: he didn’t have his trombone. Have no fear, he’d just brought it in for a tune-up, which was scheduled to be completed Saturday morning. My son called the repair shop that Saturday morning, and was told it would be done in 20 minutes. Terrific! Since we were going to be in that area later in the afternoon, we decided to pick it up then.

Trombone

What we didn’t know was that the repair shop (which is inside an instrument retailer) was not officially part of the retailer, therefore it kept different hours. So, when we arrived at 2:30, that repair shop was locked up tight. Until Monday. And the employees of the retailer couldn’t access it. Being our son was heading to college a week early specifically for marching band camp, having his trombone was a pretty big deal.

So, on Sunday we made the 3-1/2 hour trek to Fargo, ND, without his horn. We got him settled, treated him to a meal, then said our good-byes. We took a deep breath and made the long drive home.

Then, come Monday morning, I was at that repair shop bright and early to pick up his trombone so I could make that 7-hour round-trip trek all by my lonesome. I got a total of two minutes of face time with my son before he scurried back to camp, and I faced the long drive alone. Again.

Lemon Meringue PieYeah, it was a pain in the tookus, but I had a choice to make: I could grumble the entire way, or I could make lemon meringue pie out of lemons. (I prefer lemon the pie to lemonade.)

For a week, I’d been struggling with a few scenes in my novel, Memory Box Secrets (to be released in 2015). I liked them, but they slowed the beginning of the story down, so they had to go. But how do you squeeze all the important info from two long scenes into one smaller scene and make it interesting? I eeked out 700 words last week–words that were boring, sentences and paragraphs that leaped from one plot element to another, and a scene that had no cohesion. It was bleh and had to go.

I had no clue how to write this important scene, and include all the elements needed for the story, while making it riveting. No clue until this 7-hour trip. By the time I arrived home, I had the scene plotted, the pertinent info included, and just the right amount of conflict and tension to keep the reader engaged.

Could I have achieved this without the little detour? Sure, it would have come to me eventually, with a lot more wasted hours than the seven it took me to drive. Maybe the next time I’m struggling with a scene, I’ll just have to give my son a call and let him know I’m coming on up!

Now, to get that scene down on paper …

What’s Up Next?

What's Up Next?First, I want to thank all my readers for supporting me on this writing journey. Your encouragement and prayers make this writing road trip much easier to navigate. (Sorry, couldn’t help the road trip analogy–I’ve just spent the last two days in the car!)

Anyway, a number of people have been asking me What’s Up Next? When does your next book release? So here’s the scoop:

PIECES OF GRANITE is scheduled for release on October 14, 2014. Now, the fun of working with a small publisher means that the book could potentially release earlier, or a few weeks later, but it should release around that time.

That leads to the next question people ask: What’s Pieces of Granite (PoG) about?

PoG is the 2nd book to release in the Coming Home Series, and it’s a prequel to Chain of Mercy. Debbie Verhoeven, Richard Brooks’ (Chain of Mercy hero) little sister, is the heroine. So, yes, you will get glimpses of Richard in his previous life, but this is Debbie’s story. If you’re looking for something light, I’m afraid you won’t find it here, but I’m certain that doesn’t surprise you. :)

Here’s the back cover blurb:

A distressing diagnosis
A retreating husband
A prodigal brother

Couple ArgueFormer counselor Debbie Verhoeven is not your typical stay-at-home mom:

  • She sacrificed a counseling career to be a full-time mother
  • She’d rather pound a nail than round steak
  • Oprah? No way! Give her ESPN any day
  • Nothing could be more stressful than scrapbooking

Nothing, except …

a distressing diagnosis,
a husband who is pulling away,
and two older brothers who refuse to get along

When the counselor is caught in the middle, when she needs to be strong for those around her, who is left to be strong for her?

I’m also beginning the process of looking for a few additional influencers. If you’re interested, email me at Brenda (at) Brenda Anderson Books (dot) com and I’ll get you the info.

Lessons From Our Cat – Just Be Yourself

Book CatI love watching our cat, Kisses. She’s totally got a *catitude*. One minute she’s jumping on your lap and swabbing your face in kisses, then suddenly she’s nipping at your fingers.

During the day, she sleeps and sleeps and sleeps and looks adorable doing so, curled up in a ball on my office chair or stretched out on our bed. But when she wakes up, it’s play time. My husband, Marvin, is her favorite toy. He may complain about the pain she inflicts, but then he’s the one who scratches the couch to get her to chase his hand. I don’t feel sorry for him. Nope, not one little bit.

Sleepy KittyCome evening, she begs for her daily cuddle. Usually with our youngest. She reaches up to him to get picked up, then she drapes herself over his shoulder, all four legs and paws stretched out in absolute contentment.

Kisses on FridgeAnd, of course, there’s the cat curiosity. Is that a new piece of paper on the floor? I better go lay on it! Oh, the cupboard door’s open! Finally, I have permission to explore! Cool, you got me a new box! I better jump in it and check it out! You get the picture …

Kitty playing with Pooh

Playing with Pooh! Sorry, I couldn’t resist. :)

They say a cat has nine lives? Not only that, it’s got nine personalities for each of those nine lives. And I love every one of those personalities. (Well, maybe not the “I want to eat you.” personality.)

The thing is, all those personalities are typical for a cat. Am I right? Kisses isn’t doing anything–she isn’t being anything other than what God created her to be. She doesn’t try to be a dog or a mouse or a bird or a human. She is herself, and that’s all she ever will be, and we love her just the way she is!

Why can’t people be like that?

Why can’t I be like that?

All too often I’ll look at someone else and say, “I wish I had their charisma” or “Why can’t I write like Charles Martin?” or “What I’d give to sing like Sandi Patty!”

I wonder what God thinks when we’re not happy with how He created us? What does He think when we don’t appreciate and use the gifts and talents He gave us? Why can’t we be content just being ourselves?

Just imagine how God can use us when we love who God created us to be! I’m not there yet, and maybe I’ll never be there this side of eternity, but I’ll always keep striving to just be me.

For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.

Psalm 139: 13 – 16

 

Chatting with Rose Ross Zediker

Rose Ross ZedikerI’ve had the great pleasure of getting to know Rose Ross Zediker through Inkspirational Messages. 2014 has been a pretty good year for Rose with two novels releasing, THE WIDOW’S SUITOR in February, and now SWEET ON THE COWGIRL this month, and, as you’ll see below, 2015 promises to be even busier!

Rose graciously took a few minutes out of her schedule to chat with me, and she’s also generously offered to give away one copy of Sweet on the Cowgirl! (Details below) Please welcome her!

Hi Rose – thanks for stopping by today! Could you tell my readers a little about yourself?

My husband and I have been married thirty-two years. We have a son, daughter-in-law and two very precious granddaughters. 

Sweet on the CowgirlCongratulations on your newest release, Sweet on the Cowgirl! I’m so excited for you and can’t wait to get my copy! Can you tell us about the story?

Laura Barnes Wants to Be a Cowgirl - 
Laura has always dreamed of being a trick rider in her family’s Wild West show. But her father will only allow her to perform if she disguises herself as Mr. Buckskin Jones. When soda-pop king Guy Roberts shows up to do business with her family, Laura is torn between keeping her identity under wraps and revealing her growing feelings for Guy. Guy is drawn to Laura’s poise and beauty, but he, too, guards a secret. As their affection for each other grows, Guy begins to think about a future that includes Laura. When both their secrets suddenly come to light, their romance will face the ultimate showdown.

What inspired this novel?

I was visiting the Casey Tibb’s Rodeo Center Pierre, SD where there is a wing for Mattie Newcombe, a South Dakota trick rider.

Sounds like a fun place to visit!

Could you tell us about your journey to publication?

I started writing in 1991 and found success in the Christian children’s magazine markets before turning my attention to inspirational romances in 2010.

What are you working on right now?

I am working on a four book contemporary rodeo series. The first book has characters in the forties and will release in April 2015. I’ve also been contracted to write a historical novella for Barbour Publishing to be included in a collection, also releasing next year.

Wow! You are going to be very busy! I LOVE that you’re writing about characters in their 40′s–that’s so different from what we usually find, and that demographic has a completely different set of challenges.

Which authors do you enjoy reading?

I’m a very eclectic reader. I do enjoy Melody Carlson and like how varied her writing is. I’m a huge fan of E. J. Copperman’s Haunted Guest House cozy mysteries.

Have any influenced your writing?

I think all good writers influence other writers. We are always studying how someone handles description or turns a phase, whether conscious or sub-conscious.

So true! What’s on your reading list right now?

Chain of Mercy, A Bride for All Seasons, Redeeming Love, and many, many more!

That is an eclectic list, and, may I say, I’m slightly partial toward Chain of Mercy. ;-)

When you’re not writing, what do you enjoy doing?

I love to sew, make quilt tops and embroidery. And, of course, spoil my granddaughters.

Sounds wonderful!

And the most important question: milk chocolate, dark chocolate, white chocolate, or no chocolate? :)

Dark chocolate

About Rose~

Rose Ross Zediker lives in rural south eastern South Dakota and works full time for at The University of South Dakota. Rose uses her evenings and weekends to write. Besides writing inspirational romance novels, Rose has many publishing credits in the Christian children’s genre. She is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers and SCBWI.

Where to reach Rose~

Where to purchase Sweet on the Cowgirl~

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | CBD

More books by Rose~

Sweet on the Cowgirl>>>Book Giveaway<<<

Rose has graciously offered to give away one copy of Sweet on the Cowgirl! To enter, in the comments below, please tell us what your favorite flavor of pop / soda is.

This contest ends Sunday, August 17, 2014 at 11:59 pm CST. I will post the winner on Monday, August 18, 2014. Winner will be chosen via Random.org.

What True Love Is …

WeddingToday I celebrate 27 years together with my husband, Marvin. It’s been a fast 27 years, filled with a lot of ups and downs (mostly ups!) and a whole bunch of everyday moments. It’s living and loving through those everyday moments–doing dishes, mowing the lawn, changing diapers, etc.–when the euphoria of love has quieted, that shows what true love really is.

I’ve been blessed by this man who is my proudest cheerleader, a man who has selflessly provided for the family while I stayed home with the children, a man who loves Star Trek and books and roller coasters and baseball and Marvel movies as much as I do! Now that’s true love!

Henry Fonda says it perfectly in this scene from the 1968 version of Yours, Mine and Ours