Monday, May 21, 2012

Blog Giveaway!

Christina Rich is featuring my writing on her blog at for the next month.  She's doing a great job.  Please stop by and take a look--even comment for a giveaway!  :-)

Saturday, May 19, 2012


For the next three days (19-21 May), I'm joining several other authors in a Q&A "Get To Know The Author" giveaway on The Book Club Network.  A total of 82 books are up for grabs, including 3 copies of Katia, 3 vouchers for For Maria (to be sent as soon as it's released), and a set of "A Prophet's Tale."  Here's the link:

Have fun!  :-)

Friday, May 18, 2012

Yahshua's Bridge, by Sandi Rog (DeWard Publishing)

Best-selling author Robert Liparulo's opening endorsement, "Sandi Rog has done it again..." is spot on.  She really has.

Book Two in the "Iron and the Stone" series, and sequel to the award-winning The Master's Wall, Yahshua's Bridge follows our beloved characters, David and Alethea, as they experience the trials and the victories of the early Church.  This time, however, a previously supporting cast steps to center stage and transports us from Rome to Alexandria to the depths of desert-bound Egypt, and beyond.

Young Alexander has come into his own.  Tutored in the physical arts of the warrior and the spiritual disciplines of a believer by his mentor and de facto father, David, 'Zander' discovers himself and his surprising past--but that's not all.  He also discovers his future in the person of David and Alethea's daughter, Elianna.  Elianna's take on this?  Well, she's not so sure.

On her own journey of self-discovery, Elianna sheds the shackles of societal convention.  When Zander disappears, her persistent hope in his return to the fulfillment of his promise dwindles.  Meantime, David whisks her away from Rome in the charge of protectors on a journey from her enemies and from what he has become.  But he doesn't count on the Lord's intervention, as so few of us do.  Hold on for the ride, folks.  Oh, yeah.  It's dizzying.

Ms. Rog's in-depth research pairs wonderfully with her exceptional storytelling ability to yield a gripping 1st-century tale of betrayal and love, failure and faith.  You don't read about early Rome, you feel the paving stones beneath your sandals as you race with Elianna through the streets.  The wind-blown sands of the Egyptian heartland prick your face, and you blink in the intense rays of its blinding sun with Zander as he seeks his heritage.

Ultimately, the bittersweet conclusion will have you cheering and brushing the tear from your cheek at the same time.  Few authors can achieve that so fluidly.  Ms. Rog does.

Highly recommended for the historical-Biblical fiction enthusiast. You won't be sorry you took the ride.  Great read.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Distant Thunder, by Ann Gaylia O'Barr (OakTara)

A poignant story; intelligently written and thought provoking.

In Distant Thunder, Ms. O'Barr has melded a personal journey of searching and restoration with a candid, point-blank look at American culture and faith.  Okay, that's been done before.  A lot.  But what makes this book unique is the author's perspective on America through the eyes of Americans who have spent a considerable portion of their adult lives outside of America.  Herself a retired foreign service officer, Ms. O'Barr is eminently qualified to relate this tale through the lens of her characters' broadened experiences and observations.

But the story is much more than an examination of a nation.  No, there's a very personal rendering of a woman's search for meaning in the culture that has victimized her.  The woman?  Brooke Rohmer, who is a middle-aged divorcee facing an empty nest as her son prepares to enlist in the US Army.  Stuck in a dead-end job and anticipating the prospect of a personal life as mundane as her work life, Brooke books passage on a train from Georgia to Seattle to visit her aunt.  Just to get away.  And to think.

Neal Hudson, a foreign service consular officer, has just lost his wife and his best friend in separate automobile accidents in Beirut.  Reeling from shock of the double loss, and guilt-ridden at the way he and his wife parted that fateful day, he, too, opts for a train ride to his island retreat on Puget Sound's San Juan Island.  His greatest shock, though, is when he finally brings himself to read her death certificate.

Needless to tell you, Brooke and Neal encounter one another. In the company of two other State Department employees, Ethan and Kaitlin Coverwood, who also happen to be on the train, Neal and Brooke develop a faltering relationship, each afraid of letting the other in too far, understand each other too much, empathize with each other too deeply.  The foursome's discussions and blossoming friendship mirror the train's journey through the heartland of America, across the northern climes, and finally into the Pacific Northwest.

You'll learn a great deal about their perspectives--even what the Foreign Service is like--through their conversations that range from the personal to the professional--but always the profound.

Kudos to Ms. O'Barr for artfully interweaving her theme with her story, never allowing the former to obscure the latter, but delivering the pathos of each in a subtle and honest way.  Precise prose, a piquing underlying wit, and a solid grasp of her topic, the author is a pleasure to read.

Highly recommended for the thoughtul reader.